Megalencephaly

Megalencephaly (MEG) is a disorder characterised by an abnormally large brain. It is primarily a proliferative disorder of embryonic origin. It may involve all or part of the cerebral hemispheres and can be bilateral or unilateral. It is often associated with polymicrogyria or agyria

This slightly differs from the term macrocephaly which means an increase in size of the cranial vault.

It may be apparent as abnormal head circumference measurements, especially noted in the first four months of life.

Mental retardation, seizures, and other neurological abnormalities have been reported. It is important to emphasise that there is not a classical pattern of symptoms 2

Megalencephaly is a complex abnormal cell proliferation process representing excessive amount of normal brain constituents, cellular proliferation, inadequate physiologic apoptosis, and/or storage of metabolites 1

It can occur in a variety of syndromes including

MRI may show a thickened cortex with ipsilateral ventricular dilatation on the side of the megalencephaly and this feature allows differential diagnosis between congenital hemimegalencephaly from other causes, such as a lesion obstructing the foramen of Monro.

Malformations of the central nervous system
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rID: 1654
Tags: cases, refs
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Macrencephaly

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