Sciatic nerve schwannoma

Case contributed by Melbourne Uni Radiology Masters


Left sciatic pain.

Patient Data

Age: 52-year-old
Gender: Female

MRI Left tight

The lesion arising from the sciatic nerve at the level of the distal femoral shaft is unchanged in size, measuring 24 x 25 x 28 mm (AP, trans, CC). This signal characteristics are also unchanged, remaining heterogenous but predominantly high signal on T2, homogeneously low signal on T1, with intense contrast enhancement apart.


Stable appearance of the sciatic nerve lesion with features in keeping with schwannoma.

Case Discussion

This case was confirmed as a sciatic schwannoma, a rare presentation of schwannoma. They are the most frequent peripheral nerve sheath tumours 1

The main differential diagnosis is made with neurofibromas, which are usually multiple, lack tumor capsule, and cause fusiform enlargement of distal nerves. 

The sciatic nerve arises from the sacral plexus from the roots of L4-S3 and runs through the buttock and down the lower limb. It is the longest and widest single nerve in the body.


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Case information

rID: 41110
Published: 17th Nov 2015
Last edited: 16th Jul 2018
Tag: rmh
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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