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Neurosurgery. 1992 Sep;31(3):420-8.

Transcranial color-coded real-time sonography in the evaluation of intracranial neoplasms and arteriovenous malformations.

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1
Neurologische Universitätskliniken, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany.

Abstract

Transcranial color-coded real-time sonography (TCCS) was performed in 57 patients with primary intracranial brain tumors (n = 49) or arteriovenous malformations (n = 8) to evaluate its diagnostic potential. In 46 patients (81%), lesions could be identified employing this technique. In 7 patients, transcranial ultrasound examination was not feasible because of bone thickness; in the remaining 4 patients, the tumor was indistinguishable from adjacent brain tissue despite sufficient insonation, suggesting that these neoplasms are isoechogenic. The sonographic features of brain tumors were very similar: a hyperechogenic matrix of the lesion was interspersed by hypoechogenic pixels. Larger hypoechogenic areas (0.5-1 cm) gave evidence of tumor necrosis. Differences between the findings of TCCS and computed tomography concerning tumor size were found in 7 patients, in whom TCCS revealed an area of smaller extension within the corresponding hypodense area on the computed tomographic scan. Perifocal brain edema could not be detected by ultrasound examination. In 13 patients, a thin, hypoechogenic peritumoral halo was disclosed that did not correlate with perifocal brain edema identified by computed tomography and that may have been due to compression of adjacent parenchyma. In patients with arteriovenous malformations, TCCS permitted the identification of the main feeders, the nidus, and the draining venous system by color-coded depiction of intravascular blood flow. In conclusion, TCCS is an additional method for initial diagnosis and highly suitable for follow-up in tumor patients and provides valuable information about tissue characteristics and blood flow.

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