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Neurology. 2014 Mar 18;82(11):e94-5. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000000213.

Teaching neuroimages: a dangerous complication of spontaneous intracranial hypotension.

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From the Center of Excellence on Headache (C.T., E.T., A.D.V., M.A.G.), Department of Medicine and Science of Aging (C.T., E.T., M.T., A.M., M.A.G.), and Institute for Advanced Biomedical Technologies (M.C.), "G. d'Annunzio" University, Chieti, Italy; and Neurology Ward (M.V.D.A.), S. S. Annunziata Hospital, Chieti, Italy.


A 43-year-old man presented with a nontraumatic orthostatic headache, spatial disorientation, and visual hallucinations ("colored flames"). General and neurologic examination were normal. Turbo spin echo T2-weighted MRI showed bilateral subdural fluid collection and venous sinus engorgement (figure, A), suggesting spontaneous intracranial hypotension (SIH). Two subdural hematomas were also found, the biggest (2.5 cm) with mass effect in the left hemisphere (figure, B). Spine MRI identified a small radicular cyst emerging from the left T1-T2 foramen as the putative cause of CSF leakage (figure, C and D). The patient underwent drainage of the largest hematoma with benefit. Though initially planned, epidural blood patch and surgical treatment of the radicular cyst were not performed because clinical and radiologic findings improved with hematoma drainage, bed rest, and hydration. At a 3-month follow-up, MRI documented complete resolution of the subdural collection and dimensional stability of the radicular cyst. SIH is often considered benign and treated conservatively,(1)but it can rarely manifest with serious complications requiring rapid surgical evaluation.(2).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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