Clinical Neuroscience

[Functional imaging of cerebrospinal fluid pathology]

BORBÉLY Katalin

OCTOBER 10, 2004

Clinical Neuroscience - 2004;57(09-10)

[The most common problem addressed by dynamic radionuclide imaging of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) abnormalities is differentiating patients with normal-pressure hydrocephalus (NPH) from those with other forms of degenerative brain disorder who would clearly not benefit from surgical treatment by ventricular shunting. Radionuclide cisternography (RC) SPECT and regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) SPECT are critically important for the diagnosis and therapy management of patients with chronic hydrocephalus. However, radionuclide imaging is helpful not only in identifying patients with NPH showing improvement after shunting. RC reveals tracer activity outside the intracranial cavity, indeed. The importance of establishing the diagnosis arises from the fact that untreated leaks can be followed by meningitis in up to one quarter of patients. CSF collections may communicate with the subarachnoid space. RC SPECT has proved useful in assessing the communication of the arachnoid cysts (CSF collection) with the ventricular or subarachnoid compartment. Improved anatomical detail revealed by SPECT imaging is helpful in solving problems of the CSF pathology. Sensitive and accurate assessments of normal and disordered CSF dynamics can be obtained with RC SPECT.]

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KUNCZ Ádám, ROOS Arne, LUJBER László, HAAS Daniella, REFAI Al Mohamed

[Objective - A case of prepontine tension pneumocephalus after temporal bone fracture is presented. Case report - An 8-year-old girl suffered a head injury due to a fall off her bicycle. She lost her consciousness, and when she was admitted to the local hospital the Glasgow Coma Score (GCS) was 8/15 (eye opening: 2; verbal answer: 2; motor response: 4) and there was bleeding from the right ear. The patient's condition deteriorated rapidly and she needed intubation and ventilation. CT of the brain revealed large amount of air in the prepontine region, displacing the brainstem posteriorly. Patient was kept ventilated, meanwhile cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), as otorrhea appeared on the right side. CT was repeated 36 hours later, showing significantly less air in the prepontine area. The patient was weaned off the respirator, extubated and the level of consciusness improved. Later the patient developed meningitis, which was treated by systemic antibiotics with lumbar CSF drainage applied for five days. A high resolution CT scan of the petrous bone revealed a fracture crossing the middle part of the pyramid. Patient showed a full recovery except a right-sided mixed hearing loss. Conclusion - Rapid neurological deterioration following head injury can be a consequence of tension pneumocephalus. Prepontine pneumocephalus can be caused by minor fracture of petrous bone. High resolution CT is necessary to visualize minor fracture of the petrous bone. Conservative treatment may be satisfactory to treat tension hydrocephalus.]

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