Enlarged ventricles brain baby

The condition of enlarged ventricles brain baby is called Ventriculomegaly.  Ventriculomegaly is a condition that occurs when your baby’s lateral ventricles are enlarged, as determined by a doctor or sonographer. There are five fluid-filled cavities in the brain that are connected. The ventricles are the organs that make up the heart. The ventricles create and fill cerebro-spinal fluid, which then circulates into the central spinal canal.

Enlarged ventricles brain baby

The breadth of the posterior section (‘posterior horn’ or ‘atrium’) of the two lateral ventricles, located on either side of the midline, is measured during a standard ultrasonography examination. These two parallel chambers are narrow in front (towards the front of the body) and wider in back (towards the back of the body) (towards the back). The posterior horn of the lateral ventricles appears on

ultrasound as a roughly triangular dark area (due to the presence of fluid) with a white mass of tissue called the “choroid plexus” inside (in red in the first picture above). The cerebro-spinal fluid is produced by a clump of small capillaries. The width of the atrium of the lateral ventricles is normal up to 10 mm.

Ventriculomegaly is defined as a width of 10-15 mm. We refer to ventriculomegaly that is less than 12 mm as “moderate.” Hydrocephaly is a condition in which the posterior horn (atrium) measures more than 15 mm. It’s not uncommon for boys to have slightly larger lateral ventricles. Ventriculomegaly affects roughly 1% of all fetuses.

What are the Different of enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)Types?

A normal ventricle should be less than 10 millimeters (mm), which is around the size of a Cheerio®.

The following are the several types of ventriculomegaly:

  • Mild ventriculomegaly. This is when the ventricles are 11-12 mm. (About width of a Cheerio.)
  • Moderate ventriculomegaly. This is when the ventricles are 13-15 mm. (A little wider than a Cheerio.)
  • Severe ventriculomegaly. This is when the ventricles are larger than 15 mm. (About the size of a hazelnut or larger.)

What causes of enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)?

A obstruction of the cerebro-spinal fluid circulation can be caused by a variety of aberrant conditions. The aqueduct, a tiny passage between the third and fourth ventricles, can become clogged, allowing fluid to accumulate above it and causing lateral ventricle dilation (widening). On ultrasonography, this appears as expanded fluid-filled (black) gaps above the blockage level.

The following are some of the most common causes of ventriculomegaly/hydrocephaly:

  • Infections
  • Anomalies of the brain or spine
  • Anomalies of the chromosomes
  • Abrasions in the brain

What are the symptoms of enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)?

Mild ventriculomegaly normally causes no symptoms in infants. If the ventriculomegaly worsens, the newborn may have hydrocephalus symptoms, such as:

  • an unusually large head
  • a rapid increase in head size
  • extreme sleepiness
  • vomiting
  • trouble looking up when the head is facing forward
  • seizures with no known cause

Is ventriculomegaly related with any medical complications?

The most common complication of ventriculomegaly is hydrocephalus. CSF builds up within the brain’s ventricles, causing them to enlarge. This is known as hydrocephalus.

A more common condition is benign macrocrania of infancy, in which an infant has mild ventriculomegaly and a large head but no hydrocephalus. Although the infant’s head grows too quickly as a result of this issue, the baby is generally healthy and the condition is self-limiting. It doesn’t need to be treated.

Is enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)inherited?

Ventriculomegaly is usually a spontaneous condition, meaning that a child does not inherit it from his or her parents. Benign macrocephaly, on the other hand, tends to run in families, and there are a few uncommon genetic causes of hydrocephalus. Congenital hydrocephalus can be linked to other brain abnormalities or illnesses like spina bifida or heart issues.

How Is enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)Diagnosed?

In most cases, a fetus’s ventriculomegaly is discovered during a standard prenatal ultrasound exam at an obstetric visit. The ventricle size of the fetal brain can be measured via ultrasound. These ultrasound measures can be repeated throughout the pregnancy to track the size of the ventricles.

Your doctor may recommend you to our Prenatal Pediatrics Institute for additional testing to assess your baby’s status, depending on the size and growth of the ventricles. The following tests may be performed:

  • Ultrasound with high resolution (level II) to confirm the diagnosis
  • Fetal MRI is used to confirm the diagnosis and to see if there are any accompanying brain abnormalities. This high-resolution imaging test provides the most detailed information on the underlying reason and the remainder of the baby’s brain.

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Is it necessary for me to undergo more tests?

When the lateral ventricles are measured to be more than 10 mm wide by the doctor or sonographer, you will most likely be offered a variety of additional tests:

  • The fetus will be thoroughly inspected to rule out any other abnormalities.
  • Anomalies of the brain and spine will be given special attention since they can cause ventricular enlargement. A vaginal ultrasound scan may be recommended by the doctor or sonographer to examine the baby’s brain.
  • An amniocentesis will almost certainly be recommended to check for abnormalities with the number of chromosomes or major changes within the chromosomes. The majority of our genetic information is stored on chromosomes.
  • We normally have 46 of them in pairs, with 23 from one parent and 23 from the other. People with Down syndrome, for example, have an additional chromosome 21. Some Down syndrome fetuses have enlarged ventricles, however enlarged ventricles can also be caused by other genetic disorders, such as in male fetuses.
  • Infection detection and prevention to see if you had an infection throughout your pregnancy that caused the swelling of your ventricles. Toxoplasmosis or CMV infection can cause the ventricles to expand.
  • Later in pregnancy, MR (magnetic resonance) imaging of the fetal brain may be offered to see if the outer layer (cortex) of the brain is developing normally and to try to figure out why the discovery on ultrasound occurred.

Your fetus is deemed to have a “isolated” ventriculomegaly if all of these tests come back negative.

The doctor will continue to monitor your fetus with ultrasound scans to see if the lateral ventricle is enlarging.

Treatments of enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)

The issue may cure on its own if your child has mildly enlarged brain ventricles or ventriculomegaly without accompanying complications.

When hydrocephalus becomes more severe or worsens, it is critical to get treatment as soon as possible. This is because a buildup of CSF in the brain can lead to pressure on the brain and neurological issues over time.

After your baby is born, our pediatric experts will assess him or her to see if therapy is required. Treatment involves placing a ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt to give additional paths for the CSF to drain. The procedure for inserting a VP shunt is as follows:

  • A neurosurgeon places one end of a catheter — a long, thin, flexible tube – into the enlarged ventricle caused by CSF buildup.
  • The catheter’s other end is inserted under the skin and extended down to the chest and belly, where the CSF can drain and be absorbed by the abdominal cavity.

The neurologists and neurosurgeons in our Prenatal Pediatrics Institute’s Fetal Brain Program have a lot of expertise with ventriculomegaly. From the beginning of pregnancy until the end of childhood, we provide a continuum of care.

What is the long-term outlook of enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)?

The outcome of ventriculomegaly is determined by a number of factors, including the size of the ventricles, whether or not there are any additional ultrasound findings, such as agenesis of the corpus callosum, and the amniocentesis results. When the ventricles are larger, the amniocentesis is abnormal, or there are other issues visible on the ultrasound, the result is generally poorer. The best results are often seen when: This is known as “Isolated Mild Ventriculomegaly” when the fetus’ ventricles are just minimally enlarged (measure between 10-15 millimeters in size), there are no other issues on the ultrasound, and the genetic testing findings are normal.

It’s tough to predict how your child’s health will turn out. Developmental delay is the most common impact in children. The size of the ventricles appears to be a factor. We’re now researching fetal MRI to determine if the results can predict the likelihood of disability and offer families with more information about their child’s health and development. This information will assist parents in making pregnancy-related decisions and preparing for obstacles that their kid and family may experience.

How serious is my fetus’s ventriculomegaly?

If your doctor suspects ventriculomegaly, you may be referred for a variety of testing. A more comprehensive ultrasound (also known as a “Level II ultrasound” or a “Fetal Survey”), amniocentesis and/or microarray (to examine your fetus’ genetic makeup and look for signs of infection), and fetal magnetic resonance imaging are among these (Fetal MRI).

A fetal MRI is another safe approach to examine your fetus’s brain. It uses a different technology than ultrasound to produce images of your fetus’s brain. Fetal MRI can discover various issues in your fetus’s brain that ultrasonography cannot detect since it employs a different technology. We may then look at the findings of all of the tests together, and your doctor can discuss the importance of the results with you.


Should I worry about mild of enlarged ventricles brain baby (ventriculomegaly)?

If the ventriculomegaly is moderate and localized, the conclusion is usually normal after a thorough examination. The prognosis is likely to be favorable with isolated moderate ventriculomegaly of 13–15 mm following a thorough review, but there is an elevated chance of neurodevelopmental abnormalities.

What options do I have during this pregnancy?

For fetuses with ventriculomegaly, there is no therapy available before delivery. After birth, treatment consists on treating the child’s symptoms. It’s critical to have a complete diagnostic (by detailed ultrasound, amniocentesis, and MRI) during your pregnancy to see if there are any other issues. Our team can discuss these test results with you and let you know what challenges you could face. If you have evidence of more serious disabilities that require long-term care, we can help you find the right professionals.

What does this indicate for my unborn child?

The prognosis of ventriculomegaly is mostly determined by the presence of an underlying etiology. The prognosis for “isolated” ventriculomegaly is generally good. In boys with a large head, a slight expansion of the ventricles may be normal.

It’s difficult to give parents accurate information about the likelihood of a neurological impairment in a baby identified with ventriculomegaly during pregnancy. Although there is currently little data, existing medical literature suggests that the risk of neurological impairment is less than 10% when the ventriculomegaly is modest and isola is present. This corresponds to the rest of the population.

There is no special cause for further studies of the baby after birth if the ventricles did not grow in size during pregnancy and no alternative explanations for the slight enlargement have been detected. However, you or your doctor may wish to discuss this further.

How we care for ventriculomegaly

Clinicians in Boston Children’s Hospital’s Hydrocephalus Program specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of ventriculomegaly and hydrocephalus. When surgery is required, we try to avoid using a shunt by using minimally invasive approaches. Our professionals are well-versed in all of these procedures and will work with you and your family to figure out which one is ideal for your child.

Our approach is patient-centered as well as family-centered. We never lose sight of the fact that your child is a unique individual, and we involve your family in the treatment process at every point.

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Enlarged ventricles brain baby

Enlarged ventricles brain baby

Enlarged ventricles brain baby