Objective: Describe the MRI findings in capillary telangiectasias.
Materials and methods: Between 1996 and 1999, we observed 9 cases of capillary telangiectasia in 7 patients explored 5 times for posterior fossa symptoms. In two cases capillary telangiectasia was a fortuitous discovery. All patients were explored by MRI with T1 sequences with and without gadolinium injections, turbo spin echo T2 coupled in 5 cases with a double echo gradient echo T2 sequence (TR: 970 ms, TE: 15 and 35 ms). Two patients also underwent vertebral angiography.
Results: The telangiectasia gave a low intensity signal on T1 sequences in 2 of the 9 cases and a discretely high intensity signal on T2 sequences in all cases. After gadolinium injection, 9 telangiectasias showed homogeneous or speckled enhancement. The echo-gradient T2 images showed a very low intensity signal in 7 out of 7 cases on the second echo. At the first echo, 4 capillary telangiectasias were undetectable. The two vertebral angiographies were normal and the follow-up MRI in 5 patients showed lesion stability.
Conclusion: Pontile lesions with no mass effect showing enhancement after gadolinium injection and with or without a discrete T2 high intensity signal but with a frank echo-gradient T2 signal strongly suggest capillary telangiectasia.