The septum pellucidum and its variants. An MRI study

Institute for Clinical Radiology, University Munich, Ziemssenstrasse 1, 80336 Munich, Germany.
European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience (Impact Factor: 3.53). 11/2004; 254(5):295-302. DOI: 10.1007/s00406-004-0496-z
Source: PubMed


Increased prevalence of cavum septi pellucidi (CSP) in schizophrenic patients in comparison to healthy subjects was reported previously. Our purpose was to evaluate the prevalence of variants of the septum pellucidum in healthy subjects in three different age groups.
151 healthy subjects, including 46 children (age 6 +/- 4 years), 72 young adults (age 31 +/- 8 years) and 33 elderly adults (age 59 +/- 7 years) were examined with high-resolution MRI. Three observers analysed the images using a standardised protocol. We evaluated the incidences of CSP, cavum vergae (CV) and their length.
CSP was detected in 80% of the cases in the paediatric group and 68% of young adults and in 72% of the elderly adults. A cavum vergae (CV) was noted in 22% of the children, in 39% of the young adults and in 36% of the elderly subjects. There was no significant difference between the age-related groups.
We detected a high prevalence of cavum septi pellucidi without a significant age dependence. Enlarged cava septi pellucidi are rare in healthy subjects.

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    • "Notwithstanding, the reported incidence of cavum septi pellucidi varies widely between studies and ranges from 2 to 85%.[71320] When a cavum septi pellucidi persists, it is bounded posteriorly by the columns of the fornix and inferiorly by the anterior commissure and the rostrum of the corpus callosum.[3] On the other hand, a cavum vergae is a posterior extension of a cavum septi pellucidi past the columns of the fornix and the foramina of Monro in which the separation of the leaflets of the septum pellucidum continues backward up to the splenium of the corpus callosum.[28] "
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    • "This variation is also associated with enlargement of the septum pellucidum. Actually, the CC and the septum pellucidum are structurally and functionally related in terms of morphogenesis: the latter is attached to the former, and both share a common embryogenetic process (Born et al. 2004). Attentional control implies selectively attending to certain stimuli while ignoring (or inhibiting) others (Posner and Rothbart 1998). "
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    • "We operationally defined the boundaries of the CSP as follows: anteriorly by the genu of the corpus callosum, superiorly by the body of the corpus callosum, posteriorly by the anterior limb and pillars of the fornix, and inferiorly by the rostrum of the corpus callosum and the anterior commissure. When viewed in the coronal plane, the cavum is triangular with its base at the corpus callosum (Born et al., 2004). Voxels within the tracing boundaries for each slice were then summed to calculate volume in mm 3 . "
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