Based on air studies, some authors have disputed the ability of computed tomography (CT) to diagnose posterior fossa cysts. The authors correlated the pneumoencephalographic, CT, and pathological findings in 4 patients with classic Dandy-Walker syndrome. Three cases had been misdiagnosed as retrocerebellar arachnoid cysts because the fourth ventricle was incorrectly considered normal on brow-up or erect air studies, reflecting the inability of such studies to evaluate an agenetic vermis and deficient posterior medullary velum which are characteristic of Dandy-Walker malformation. Careful correlation with autopsy findings showed that even with complete agenesis of the inferior vermis, if the slit between the cerebellar hemispheres is narrow, the fourth ventricle could be misinterpreted as normal on pneumoencephalography and sagittal CT. Radionuclide studies, a small amount of air, or metrizamide may be needed to determine whether the cyst communicates with the subarachnoid space.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging