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1/44. Neurological morbidity after fetal supraventricular tachyarrhythmia.

    BACKGROUND: Fetal tachyarrhythmia is a well-documented entity which, in the absence of pharmacological intervention, may lead to congestive heart failure, fetal hydrops and eventually fetal demise. The success rate of the implemented treatment is generally measured by survival and achievement of control of the arrhythmia. We report on the occurrence of associated cerebral damage in three patients with fetal tachycardia. methods: We describe three patients with a history of fetal supraventricular tachyarrhythmia who developed cerebral complications in utero. RESULTS: Two patients had cerebral hypoxic-ischemic lesions and one had hemorrhagic lesions present at birth. They had developed severe congestive heart failure and fetal hydrops secondary to fetal tachyarrhythmia, and there were no other obvious causes for the cerebral pathology. Two of these patients were referred to us antenatally. Therapy was instituted and resulted in control of the tachycardia and resolution of hydrops. The third patient was referred to our clinic shortly after birth because of severe circulatory problems secondary to fetal tachyarrhythmia. CONCLUSION: From these observations, we believe that a fetus with tachyarrhythmia and subsequent hydrops is at increased risk for the development of cerebral complications, due to the circulatory disturbances and sudden changes in heart rate which may lead to fluctuations in cerebral perfusion. This would imply that it is of the utmost importance to aim at immediate and complete control of the heart rate in the treatment of fetal tachyarrhythmia. ( info)

2/44. Early detection of periventricular leukomalacia by diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging techniques.

    Periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), the principal form of brain injury in the premature infant, is characterized by overt focal necrotic lesions in periventricular white matter and less prominent, more diffuse cerebral white matter injury. The early detection of the latter, diffuse component of PVL is not consistently possible with conventional brain imaging techniques. We demonstrate the early detection of the diffuse component of PVL by diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (DWI). In a premature infant with no definite cerebral abnormality detectable by cranial ultrasonography or conventional magnetic resonance imaging, DWI showed a striking bilateral decrease in water diffusion in cerebral white matter. The DWI abnormality (ie, decreased apparent diffusion coefficient) was similar to that observed with acute cerebral ischemic lesions in adults. At 10 weeks of age, conventional magnetic resonance imaging and ultrasonography showed striking changes consistent with PVL, including the presence of small cysts. The observations indicate the importance of DWI in the early identification of the diffuse component of PVL and also perhaps the role of ischemia in the pathogenesis of the lesion. ( info)

3/44. Homozygous factor-V mutation as a genetic cause of perinatal thrombosis and cerebral palsy.

    A 5-year old girl with cerebral palsy (CP), preterm birth, postnatal aortic thrombus, and cerebellar venous infarction who is homozygous for the thrombophilic factor-V Leiden (fVL) mutation is reported. The role of hereditary thrombophilic disorders in the development of perinatal vascular lesions such as aortic thrombi, renal-vein thrombosis, venous-sinus thrombosis, and cerebral infarction is unknown. This case report brings into question a potential association between fVL, perinatal vascular lesions, perinatal stroke, and CP. ( info)

4/44. Prenatal confirmation of periventricular leukomalacia in a surviving monochorionic-diamniotic twin after death of the other fetus: a case report.

    A 30-year-old woman was found to be carrying monochorionic-diamniotic twins at 7 weeks of gestation. The growth-retarded fetus died at 21 weeks of gestation. At 28 weeks of gestation, periventricular leukomalacia was detected in the brain of the surviving fetus by transvaginal ultrasonography. A female baby presenting with microcephaly was born at 39 weeks of gestation, and CT of the brain showed microcephaly and marked hydrocephalus. At 12 months of age, the surviving infant presented with severe physical growth retardation, and frequent episodes of clonic convulsions. ( info)

5/44. Neonatal periventricular leukomalacia preceded by fetal periventricular echodensity.

    OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this prospective study is to verify whether fetal periventricular echodensity (PVE) precedes neonatal periventricular leukomalacia (PVL). methods: Fetal brains were studied with transvaginal scan in 63 high-risk fetuses from 17 to 32 weeks of pregnancy, PVE echogenicity was quantified with ultrasonic histogram, and neonatal brains and clinical courses were studied after birth. RESULTS: No fetal cystic PVL was found, instead, fetal PVE was detected in 42 fetuses. The quantified echogenicity value was higher in PVE than in normal brain. Four cases developed neonatal PVL among 28 preterm and 1 among 14 term births. Neonatal PVL developed in the 23 cases of persistent fetal PVE, whereas no neonatal PVL was found when fetal PVE was negative or disappeared. Cord compression signs were common in PVL cases. CONCLUSION: Neonatal PVL was preceded by antepartum persistent fetal PVE in the present study. ( info)

6/44. Cerebral blood flow velocity in two patients with neonatal cerebral infarction.

    Cerebral blood flow velocity was measured in the middle cerebral artery of two patients who exhibited unilateral neonatal cerebral infarction during the neonatal period. Doppler studies demonstrated increases in cerebral blood flow velocity but decreases in the resistance index on the affected side of the middle cerebral artery in the neonate who developed hemiplegia with cystic encephalomalacia, although the neonate with normal neurologic outcome exhibited symmetric cerebral blood flow velocity and resistance index. The asymmetry in cerebral blood flow velocity measurements of both middle cerebral arteries may be useful to evaluate the severity of brain damage and predict the neurodevelopmental prognosis of unilateral neonatal cerebral infarction. ( info)

7/44. Unilateral parenchymal haemorrhagic infarction in the preterm infant.

    A unilateral parenchymal haemorrhage associated with a germinal matrix-intraventricular haemorrhage (GMH-IVH) is still an important problem in the preterm infant and especially in those who are very immature. This type of lesion is now considered mainly to be caused by impaired drainage of the veins in the periventricular white matter and is often referred to as a venous infarction. The risk factors and neonatal imaging findings, as well as neurodevelopmental outcome and imaging data in infancy, of this type of lesion differ from those found in children with bilateral periventricular leukomalacia. An effort should, therefore, always be made to make a distinction between these two types of lesions. In our experience it is possible to make this distinction in most cases, when performing both sequential ultrasonography as well as selective magnetic resonance imaging during the neonatal period. ( info)

8/44. Markers of oxidative injury in the cerebrospinal fluid of a premature infant with meningitis and periventricular leukomalacia.

    free radicals have been hypothesized to play a key role in the evolution of periventricular leukomalacia, although direct evidence of oxidative injury in the human infant is lacking. This case report is the first to demonstrate a marked elevation in the levels of lipid and protein oxidative products in the cerebrospinal fluid during the evolution of periventricular leukomalacia in a premature infant with meningitis. ( info)

9/44. cerebral palsy and juvenile-onset bipolar disorder. A preliminary report.

    cerebral palsy refers to a heterogeneous group of congenital and early acquired brain disorders. Children with cerebral palsy and other brain disorders have an increased rate of psychiatric disorder. The pattern of disorder is not particularly distinctive and no specific association has been found. We report two cases of spastic diplegia of prematurity comorbid with juvenile onset bipolar disorder, which highlight some of the diagnostic difficulties in these cases. An interesting association between the periventricular leucomalacia as an aetiological factor in cerebral palsy and the white matter lesions seen on magnetic resonance imaging in cases of bipolar disorder is noted. ( info)

10/44. battered child syndrome: cerebral ultrasound and CT findings after vigorous shaking.

    child abuse by whiplash-shaking can lead to severe cerebral damage, neurological defects and mental retardation. Cerebral damage has been found with and without external evidence of head injury. We report the sonographic findings in two children after traumatization due to repetitive vigorous whiplash shaking. Cerebral sonography revealed cerebral edema at admission or within 48 hours thereafter. follow-up studies demonstrated development of marked brain atrophy in both cases. The sonographic findings were confirmed by cranial computerized tomography. Doppler sonography was used to monitor cerebral perfusion by measuring intracranial blood flow. The clinical history of the patients demonstrates that cerebral sonography in combination with Doppler sonography not only serves as a diagnostic tool but also allows adjustment of therapy to the actual clinical status of the patient. ( info)
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