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Eur J Radiol. 2006 Feb;57(2):233-49. Epub 2006 Jan 18.

MRI of fetal acquired brain lesions.

Author information

  • 1Department of Radiodiagnostics, Medical University of Vienna, Austria. daniela.prayer@meduniwien.ac.at

Abstract

Acquired fetal brain damage is suspected in cases of destruction of previously normally formed tissue, the primary cause of which is hypoxia. Fetal brain damage may occur as a consequence of acute or chronic maternal diseases, with acute diseases causing impairment of oxygen delivery to the fetal brain, and chronic diseases interfering with normal, placental development. Infections, metabolic diseases, feto-fetal transfusion syndrome, toxic agents, mechanical traumatic events, iatrogenic accidents, and space-occupying lesions may also qualify as pathologic conditions that initiate intrauterine brain damage. MR manifestations of acute fetal brain injury (such as hemorrhage or acute ischemic lesions) can easily be recognized, as they are hardly different from postnatal lesions. The availability of diffusion-weighted sequences enhances the sensitivity in recognizing acute ischemic lesions. Recent hemorrhages are usually readily depicted on T2 (*) sequences, where they display hypointense signals. Chronic fetal brain injury may be characterized by nonspecific changes that must be attributable to the presence of an acquired cerebral pathology. The workup in suspected acquired fetal brain injury also includes the assessment of extra-CNS organs that may be affected by an underlying pathology. Finally, the placenta, as the organ that mediates oxygen delivery from the maternal circulation to the fetus, must be examined on MR images.

PMID:
16413156
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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