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Acta Neurol Scand. 2006 Sep;114(3):193-7.

Perfusion and diffusion magnetic resonance imaging in idiopathic intracranial hypertension.

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Department of Radiology, Cukurova University, Balcali Hospital, Adana, Turkey.



Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) is characterized by abnormal elevation of intracranial pressure without any underlying etiologic factor. Papilledema is the major clinical finding whereas neuroradiological imaging findings are almost always normal. The aim of this preliminary study was to determine if diffusion and perfusion magnetic resonance imaging in patients with IIH might be beneficial in the management of the disease.


Prospectively, we evaluated standard magnetic resonance, magnetic resonance angiographies and venographies, diffusion and perfusion magnetic resonance findings of 16 patients with IIH and of 16 age-, sex-, and weight-matched normal individuals as a control group. Patients with IIH underwent a detailed neuroophthalmologic examination and lumbar puncture for evaluation of cerebrospinal fluid pressure. Magnetic resonance imaging was performed with 1.5 T equipment.


On physical examination, all patients had characteristic papilledema, varying degrees of headache, blurred vision and tinnitus. Cerebrospinal fluid pressure was higher than 250 mm H2O in all patients. A statistically significant decrease in cerebral blood flow in six patients, whereas insignificant increase in two were detected. Cerebral blood volume values were almost similar to normal control group's values. Significant mean transit time prolongation was found in six patients as well.


Idiopathic intracranial hypertension is a clinical syndrome which requires prompt diagnosis and a thorough evaluation. Treatment is crucial for preventing visual loss and improving associated symptoms. It is also important to detect cerebral perfusion changes, as cerebrovascular complications may be associated. Although our patient group is small for statistical evaluation, it is a preliminary study using perfusion and diffusion magnetic resonance which may contribute to IIH management.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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