Childs Nerv Syst. 2016 Jul;32(7):1257-63. doi: 10.1007/s00381-016-3064-8. Epub 2016 Mar 21.
Intracranial arachnoid cysts are cystic malformations found in both adults and children. While many are asymptomatic, some cause symptoms and warrant surgical treatment. In this prospective population-based study, we aimed to study the short- and long-term outcome after surgical intervention in children with arachnoid cysts referred to our centre.
Twenty-seven pediatric patients (13 f. 14 m, mean age 9.4 years) with de novo cysts were consecutively included during a 5-year period. The presenting symptoms were headache (n = 12), balance disturbance and dizziness (n = 6), seizures (n = 6), hydrocephalus (n = 5), and macrocephaly (n = 1). Twenty-two patients underwent surgical treatment with either microsurgical (n = 17) or endoscopic fenestration (n = 5) of the cyst wall. Cyst volume was measured with OsiriX® software pre- and postoperatively. Short-term and long-term follow-up of all patients was conducted 3 months and 8.6 years (7-10.5 years) postoperatively.
Three months after surgery, 59 % of the patients were improved regarding at least one major complaint, and average cyst volume was reduced to 33.3 ml (0-145 ml). At the long-term follow-up of 8.6 years, 77 % of the patients were improved regarding at least one symptom but subjective symptoms remained in 59 %. There was no permanent postoperative morbidity. We found no association between radiological reduction of cyst volume and clinical improvement.
Our findings support a restrictive attitude to surgery for intracranial arachnoid cysts, in the absence of objectively verified symptoms and signs or obstruction of CSF pathways.
Arachnoid cysts; Cyst volume; Long-term outcome; Radiological versus clinical improvement