[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A high metabolic demand, rich vascularization and high concentrations of ionic elements leading to the generation of oxygen free radicals, give to the deep grey matter (DGM) nuclei specific susceptibility to both acute and chronic insults, especially in paediatric patients. Reaching a diagnosis in the early stages of acute diseases in many patients is crucial for instigating prompt specific therapy leading to a favourable outcome. On the basis of a review of a 10-year in-house database and a review of the literature on CNS pathology involving the DGM nuclei in paediatric patients, we summarize the MR findings and clinical clues that may help the radiologist in the difficult differential diagnosis process. The terms "acute" and "chronic" refer to the clinical onset of the disease. MR imaging allows the detection of an injury, determination of its precise anatomical location and characterization of the signal changes. This, combined with a knowledge of specific MRI patterns, may be a roadmap to a definite diagnosis. Clinical history, physical and laboratory findings, timing of the MR examination and advanced MR imaging techniques (diffusion-weighted imaging and (1)H-MR spectroscopy), are crucial in some patients.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this paper is to describe the imaging features of central nervous system (CNS) tuberculosis on computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies in non-HIV-positive children.
A retrospective descriptive evaluation was conducted on imaging studies obtained from ten children admitted to our hospital over a 6-year period who fulfilled criteria for a diagnosis of CNS tuberculosis. Data were collected with regard to patients' clinical, laboratory and demographic characteristics, as well as results of radiological investigation.
We studied ten children, of whom five were boys and five were girls and whose mean age was 4 (range 7 months to 16) years. Neuroradiological findings on the first imaging study were basal meningeal enhancement (100%), hydrocephalus (70%), infarcts (90%), tuberculomas (40%) and cranial nerve involvement (20%). Follow-up studies revealed basal meningeal enhancement, hydrocephalus, and infarcts in all patients, tuberculomas in 70% and cranial nerve involvement in 50%. Only one patient showed a pattern of miliary tuberculosis.
CNS tuberculosis is still an important cause of childhood morbidity and mortality even in nonimmunosuppressed children. Because prompt diagnosis results in earlier treatment, it is crucial to be aware of tuberculous meningitis and its complications at imaging, especially because of the impact on patients' prognosis.
La radiologia medica 11/2011; 117(4):669-78. · 1.46 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Encephalocraniocutaneous lipomatosis (ECCL) is a rare neurocutaneous syndrome characterized by involvement of tissues of ectodermal and mesodermal origin such as skin, eye, adipose tissue, and brain. Since 1970, when Haberland and Perou had described the first patient, 54 cases of ECCL have been reported in literature. We report on three new boys with ECCL. In addition to their typical dermal, ocular and central nervous system anomalies, one of them had a spheno-ethmoidal osseous lesion. Histopathological evaluation confirmed the benign nature of the lesion and was consistent with fibrous dysplasia. The aim of our study is to review clinical records and brain imaging studies of these three new patients with ECCL and compare these findings with those reported in literature to better define the phenotypic spectrum and radiological findings in ECCL.
American Journal of Medical Genetics Part A 07/2011; 155A(7):1690-6. · 2.30 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Few studies have used Voxel-Based Morphometry (VBM) to examine brain structure in Anorexia Nervosa patients. The purpose of the present study was to investigate a sample of Anorexia Nervosa restrictive type (AN-r) adolescent patients in the early stages of the illness, using VBM in order to characterize morphometric gray matter (GM) changes. Participants were 16 AN-r female patients (with no other psychiatric disorders) whose AN-r had been in progress for less than 12 months and 16 age-matched healthy female subjects. High-resolution T1-weighted magnetic resonance images were preprocessed according to the optimized VBM method, and statistically analyzed. The analyses revealed a significant global GM decrease in the AN-r patients; furthermore, a significant region-specific decrease in GM volume was found bilaterally in the middle cingulate cortex, the precuneus, and the inferior and superior parietal lobules. The significant early GM decrease in the aforementioned regions in AN-r adolescent patients suggests that there might be a region-specific GM vulnerability that could play a role in the pathophysiology of the disease. Given that these regions are also involved in the manipulation of mental images and the mental representation of the self, this might explain the presence of a distorted body image in these patients.
Psychiatry Research 11/2010; 191(1):24-30. · 2.46 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We describe a group of previously normal children who developed severe focal epilepsy after an acute/sub-acute illness resembling encephalitis.
This is a retrospective study. An acute phase (encephalitis/encephalopathy period) and a chronic phase (chronic focal resistant epilepsy) were defined.
Eight patients were enrolled. The median age at onset was 6.6 years (range 8 months-17.6 years). In the acute phase, fever was the first symptom in all cases and was associated with seizures and status epilepticus. All patients had focal seizures arising in both hemispheres. Seizure onset occurred in the frontal and temporal regions. EEGs showed slowing background activity associated with focal or diffuse slow waves with rare epileptiform abnormalities. Cerebrospinal fluid oligoclonal bands were observed in four out of six patients tested. MRI images showed bilateral peri-insular hyperintensity in four cases. Five patients received corticosteroids, and in four cases, they were given along with intravenous immunoglobulins. The median duration of the acute phase was 19 days (range 15-30 days). During the chronic phase, which followed the acute phase without interval, patients presented with drug-resistant focal seizures and neuropsychological deficits, which ranged from hyperactivity and attention deficits to short-term verbal memory deficit, pervasive developmental disorders, and language delay.
Considering the clinical presentations, EEG findings, and the associated occurrence of non-specific immunological activations, a possible immune-mediated pathogenesis can be hypothesized, although firm conclusions cannot be drawn out.
European Journal of Neurology 11/2010; 18(7):952-61. · 4.16 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The anatomic extent of brain stem damage may provide information about clinical outcome and prognosis in children with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy and oral motor dysfunction. The aim of this study was to retrospectively characterize the location and extent of brain stem lesions in children with oral motor dysfunction. From January 2005 to August 2009, 43 infants hospitalized at our institution were included in the study because of a history of hypoxic-ischemic events. Of this group, 14 patients showed oral motor dysfunction and brain stem tegmental lesions detected at MR imaging. MR imaging showed hypoxic-ischemic lesions in supra- and infratentorial areas. Six of 14 patients revealed only infratentorial lesions. Focal symmetric lesions of the tegmental brain stem were always present. The lesions appeared hyperintense on T2-weighted images and hypointense on IR images. We found a strong association (P < .0001) between oral motor dysfunction and infratentorial lesions on MR imaging. Oral motor dysfunction was associated with brain stem tegmental lesions in posthypoxic-ischemic infants. The MR imaging examination should be directed to the brain stem, especially when a condition of prolonged gavage feeding is necessary in infants.
American Journal of Neuroradiology 09/2010; 31(8):1438-42. · 3.17 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Heterotopic neuroglial tissue is a rare lesion, occurring more frequently in the nasal cavities. Other rare locations are the orbit, the scalp, the palate, the pharynx, the parapharyngeal space and the lungs. They are usually detected occasionally because they are often asymptomatic, but sometimes they might present with dyspnoea, feeding difficulty, snorting and nasal flaring. Respiratory symptoms occur when heterotopic neuroglial tissue is located in the parapharyngeal space. We report a case of an infant affected by Pierre Robin sequence (PRS) who was admitted to our Institution for a worsening respiratory distress that was not explainable only by PRS.
International journal of pediatric otorhinolaryngology 07/2009; 73(9):1308-10. · 0.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Parry-Romberg syndrome (PRS) is a sporadic disease of unknown etiology with typical onset in childhood or in young adults. It is characterized by a slow and progressive atrophy affecting one side of the face, the skin, the subcutaneous tissue, the muscles, the cartilages, and the underlying bony structures. The neurological symptoms usually include focal epilepsy, migraine, and unilateral brain lesions on the same side as the atrophy. A common neuroimaging finding of the syndrome is white matter high signal intensity on brain magnetic resonance (MR) imaging. Rasmussen encephalitis (RE) is a rare and chronic inflammatory disease of the brain that begins in the first decade of life and more rarely in adolescents and adults. It usually involves one hemisphere with focal cortical inflammation. Neurologic symptoms are intractable seizures and progressive hemiplegia. Both PRS and RE are often associated with other inflammatory or autoimmune disorders and only 1 case of both syndromes has been reported in literature. We report the clinical and neuroradiological findings in a 6-year-old boy, presenting with focal hemifacial and arm motor seizures and progressive facial hemiatrophy. Serial MR imaging studies revealed progressive brain hemispheric signal alterations and atrophy. This would thus suggest acoexistence of PRS and RE.
Journal of neuroimaging: official journal of the American Society of Neuroimaging 07/2009; 21(2):188-93. · 1.72 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although cytomegalovirus (CMV) congenital infection is more severe in children born to women with primary infection, neurological symptoms have also been observed in infants born to mothers with preconceptional immunity. The authors describe for the first time a case of severe cortical development disorder associated with multiple abnormalities of the white matter, occurring in the second-born child of a woman found to be positive for anti-CMV immunoglobulin G (IgG) before pregnancy. CMV DNA was detected in the urine and blood of the infant. These findings indicate that the neurological outcome of CMV infection may be severe also in infants born to women with preexisting immunity.
Journal of NeuroVirology 05/2008; 14(2):173-6. · 2.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Citrullinaemia is a rare inborn error of urea cycle metabolism. We describe the MRI findings in a 16-year-old boy with type I citrullinaemia during an episode of acute hyperammonaemic encephalopathy and compare them to his previous follow-up MRI studies. MRI revealed bilateral high signal intensity in the cingulate, perirolandic, parietal and temporoinsular cortex, the subcortical white matter and left thalamus. Diffusion-weighted imaging showed high signal intensity and low apparent diffusion coefficient values in the frontoparietal lobes. To our knowledge, MRI findings in an adolescent with type I citrullinaemia have not been previously reported. Since our patient's neuroradiological findings showed greater similarity to type II citrullinaemia, we think his brain injury during this acute episode was probably age-related and independent of the type of citrullinaemia.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report the case of a 4.6-year-old girl born pre-term with early bilateral occipital damage. It was revealed that the child had non-severely impaired basic visual abilities and ocular motility, a selective perceptual deficit of figure-ground segregation, impaired visual recognition and abnormal navigating through space. Even if the child's visual functioning was not optimal, this was the expression of adaptive anatomic and functional brain modifications that occurred following the early lesion. Anatomic brain structure was studied with anatomic MRI and Diffusor Tensor Imaging (DTI)-MRI. This behavioral study may provide an important contribution to understanding the impact of an early lesion of the visual system on the development of visual functions and on the immature brain's potential for reorganisation related to when the damage occurred.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cobalamin C/D defect is an inborn error of cobalamin metabolism causing methylmalonic aciduria and homocystinuria. The early-onset form is characterized by severe neurological impairment. The aim of this study was to evaluate and monitor brain damage in early-onset cbl-C/D defect by conventional MRI and to assess the additional value of 1H-MRS.
We retrospectively examined serial MRI studies of 7 patients, performed on a 1.5 T system. Four patients had the first evaluation within the first 4 months of life and three later. The imaging protocol included spin-echo T1-weighted, T2-weighted, IR, and FLAIR. Five patients underwent 1H-MRS, using chemical shift imaging (CSI) in three patients and single voxel spectroscopy (SVS) in two.
Three of the patients studied early showed tetraventricular hydrocephalus and diffuse swelling of supratentorial white matter with involvement of the "U" fibres. Two showed patchy cavitating lesions in the basal ganglia. White matter changes became evident at a later stage. In three cases 1H-MRS showed an abnormal peak of lactate in the basal ganglia or in the periventricular white matter.
Our study shows severe heterogeneous brain MR abnormalities in cbl-C/D defect. We observed unusual basal ganglia lesions in 30 % of our cases and also found a high incidence of hydrocephalus and supratentorial white matter abnormalities.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The authors report the clinical and molecular findings in eight patients with hyperornithinemia, hyperammonemia, and homocitrullinuria (HHH) syndrome. The most consistent neurologic finding was spastic paraparesis, seen in five of the eight patients. However, all showed signs of pyramidal tract involvement. A broad spectrum of pathogenetic mutations (including missense, nonsense, splice site, insertion, and deletions) were identified in the ORNT1 gene.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Neurofibromatosis type 1 is frequently associated with increased intensity T2-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain abnormalities, called "unidentified bright objects." Unidentified bright objects are generally held to be benign and tend to decrease in size during adulthood. We describe a case of neurofibromatosis type 1 with a similar thalamic and subthalamic MRI abnormality associated with contralateral hand dystonia. Over a 2-year follow-up, the lesions showed a reduction in size apparently correlated with a reduction in symptoms.
Journal of Child Neurology 09/2001; 16(8):606-8. · 1.39 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To describe clinical and neuropathologic studies and linkage analysis on two sisters with a severe form of leukodystrophy.
A detailed study was performed on the second sister. Genotyping markers for chromosome 3, including eight additional markers surrounding the vanishing white matter (VWM) locus, were used.
During the first year of life, two sisters developed a severe neurologic condition after an intercurrent infection. It was accompanied by irritability and stupor with rapid loss of their motor abilities. Results of extensive metabolic studies were negative. Brain MRI showed severe and diffuse abnormalities of the encephalic white matter. Neuropathologic examination showed a severe lack of myelin with diffuse vacuolating white matter lesions in the brain, associated with an increased density of oligodendrocytes and a reduced number of astrocytes on morphometric analysis. In sharp contrast, the spinal cord white matter was preserved. The affected sibpairs shared a common haplotype for a broad region in chromosome 3. They were homozygous between markers D3S1565 and D3S3669, including the VWM locus.
This condition is an unusual variant of childhood ataxia with diffuse central hypomyelination (CACH)/VWM, with characteristic shrinking and perivascular clustering of astrocytes. Haplotype analysis suggests that this variant is allelic to the VWM locus located on chromosome 3q27.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This paper presents the dosimetric results obtained during computed tomography (CT) thorax examinations, carried out using two different techniques, i.e., sequential CT (SQCT) and helical CT (HECT). The radiological examinations have been carried out on pediatric phantoms expressly designed and realized. Four different phantoms have been realized, according to the children shapes of 0, 2, 6, and 12 years old. The dosimetric measurements have been carried out using thermoluminescent dosimeters. The comparison of the dosimetric data obtained using the two different techniques shows that there is not any relevant difference between them as far as the entrance dose and the doses received by the critical organs are concerned.
Medical Physics 03/2001; 28(2):199-204. · 2.91 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We describe a 19-year-old cystic fibrosis patient, with pancreatic insufficiency since the age of 4 who presented at the age of 13 with postprandial abdominal pain. Ultrasonography and computed tomography showed several pancreatic cysts that progressively increased in diameter over 6 years. The lack of association with clinical and biochemical signs of acute pancreatitis is highlighted.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report on a family in which two males are affected with X-linked congenital ataxia (XCA). Clinical manifestations include severe hypotonia at birth, delay of early motor development, slow eye movements, and nonprogressive cerebellar ataxia. The neurological examination excluded a neuromuscular disease, mental retardation, and pyramidal tract involvement. Neuroimaging showed global cerebellar atrophy in both patients that was not evident in the first years of life. The clinical findings in this family are very similar to those in a Russian pedigree [Illarioskin et al., 1996: Ann Neurol 40:75-83] and outline a recognizable phenotype. Linkage studies in our family, using 28 highly polymorphic Généthon microsatellite markers evenly distributed along the X chromosome, excluded a 24 cM interval between DXS990 and DXS424 located within the previous candidate region of 54 cM, reducing the critical interval.
American Journal of Medical Genetics 06/2000; 92(1):53-6.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report an Italian family in which the T-to-C point mutation at nucleotide 9176 of the mitochondrial adenosine triphosphate synthetase (mtATPase) 6 gene is associated with an early-onset fulminant form of Leigh syndrome and with sudden unexpected death in two siblings, respectively. Polymerase chain reaction single-strand conformation polymorphism (PCR-SSCP) analysis and direct sequencing revealed that the mutation was homoplasmic in mitochondrial DNA of the proband. The T9176C mutation changes a highly conserved leucine to a proline in subunit 6 of the mtATPase gene and is maternally inherited, but the maternal relatives are asymptomatic. This point mutation was initially described in two brothers with bilateral striatal necrosis, a milder variant of Leigh syndrome.