Sunset eye sign

The sunset eye sign (also known as the setting sun phenomenon) is a clinical phenomenon encountered in infants and young children with raised intracranial pressures (seen in up to 40% of children with obstructive hydrocephalus and 13% of children with shunt dysfunction 1). 

It consists of an up-gaze paresis with the eyes appearing driven downward. The lower portion of the pupil may be covered by the lower eyelid, and sclera may be seen between the upper eyelid and the iris.

It is presumably related to Parinaud's syndrome and results from compression of the peri-aqueductal structures. 

Share article

Article information

rID: 15737
Section: Signs
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Setting sun phenomenon

Support Radiopaedia and see fewer ads

Cases and figures

  • Drag
    Case 1 : with congenital aqueductal stenosis
    Drag here to reorder.
  • Updating… Please wait.
    Loadinganimation

    Alert accept

    Error Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

    Alert accept Thank you for updating your details.