Wegener granulomatosis: MR imaging findings in brain and meninges

Radiology. 1999 Dec;213(3):794-9. doi: 10.1148/radiology.213.3.r99dc11794.


Purpose: To determine the spectrum of intracranial magnetic resonance (MR) imaging appearances of Wegener granulomatosis.

Materials and methods: MR imaging studies in 19 patients with Wegener granulomatosis and possible central nervous system involvement were reviewed by two neuroradiologists. Intermediate-weighted and T2-weighted fast spin-echo MR images of the brain had been acquired in all patients, and spin-echo T1-weighted nonenhanced and gadolinium-enhanced images had been acquired in 18 patients.

Results: MR imaging findings included diffuse linear dural thickening and enhancement (n = 6); focal dural thickening and enhancement contiguous with orbital, nasal, or paranasal disease (n = 5); infarcts (n = 4); nonspecific white matter areas of high signal intensity on intermediate-weighted and T2-weighted images (n = 10); enlarged pituitary gland with infundibular thickening and enhancement (n = 2); a discrete cerebellar lesion that was probably granulomatous in origin (n = 1); and cerebral (n = 8) and cerebellar atrophy (n = 2).

Conclusion: MR imaging demonstrated the wide spectrum of findings of central nervous system involvement in patients with Wegener granulomatosis and was particularly useful for the evaluation of direct intracranial spread from orbital, nasal, or paranasal disease.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Atrophy
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Cerebellum / pathology
  • Cerebral Infarction / diagnosis
  • Echo-Planar Imaging
  • Female
  • Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis / diagnosis*
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Male
  • Meninges / pathology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Pituitary Gland / pathology