From 1985 to 1991, 13 children were diagnosed at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria, Saint Francis Medical Center, with cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT) by magnetic resonance imaging scan. Ages ranged from newborn to 5 years. Six children were premature neonates, five were term neonates and two were 5 years old. In the premature neonates, thrombosis was usually associated with other problems. All the term neonates had seizures. In all neonates, thrombosis resolved without any specific treatment. In the two older children, one presented with pseudotumor cerebri and one with coma. These children required neurosurgical intervention. Follow-up magnetic resonance imaging scans were obtained in 9 of 13 children and showed thrombus resolution in each case. Three children were studied in the acute and convalescent stages by magnetic resonance angiography using time-of-flight techniques. Each follow-up magnetic resonance angiogram showed improvement in venous flow consistent with their clinical course and other imaging studies. We conclude that 1) CVT in children encompasses a range of clinical conditions which may or may not require neurosurgical intervention; 2) magnetic resonance imaging is superior to other modalities for the diagnosis of CVT; and 3) magnetic resonance angiography is an alternative means to monitor the evolution of CVT and efficacy of therapeutic intervention.