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Clin Radiol. 2006 Aug;61(8):679-85.

Post-mortem MRI of the foetal spine and spinal cord.

Author information

1
Academic Section of Radiology, Sheffield Children's Hospital, Sheffield, UK. elysa.widjaja@sickkids.ca

Abstract

AIMS:

To compare the findings of post-mortem magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the foetal spine with autopsy with a view to using post-mortem MRI as an alternative or adjunct to autopsy, particularly in foetal and neonatal cases.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

The brains and spines of 41 foetuses, with a gestational age range of 14-41 weeks, underwent post-mortem MRI before autopsy. Post-mortem MRI of the brain consisted of T2-weighted sequences in three orthogonal planes and MRI of the spine consisted of T2-weighted sequence in the sagittal and axial planes in all cases and coronal planes in selected cases.

RESULTS:

Thirty of 41 (78%) foetal spines were found to be normal at autopsy and on post-mortem MRI. Eleven of 41 (22%) foetal spines were abnormal: eight foetuses had myelomeningocoeles and Chiari 2 deformities, one foetus had limited dorsal myeloschisis, one foetus had caudal regression syndrome, and one had diastematomyelia. The post-mortem MRI findings concurred with the autopsy findings in 10/11 of the abnormal cases, the disagreement being the case of diastematomyelia that was shown on post-mortem MRI but was not diagnosed at autopsy.

CONCLUSIONS:

In this series, post-mortem MRI findings agreed with the autopsy findings in 40/41(98%) cases and in one case the post-mortem MRI demonstrated an abnormality not demonstrated at autopsy.

PMID:
16843751
DOI:
10.1016/j.crad.2006.01.016
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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