Prognosis of isolated mild to moderate fetal cerebral ventriculomegaly: a systematic review

J Perinat Med. 2010 Jul;38(4):401-9. doi: 10.1515/jpm.2010.048.


Aims: To ascertain risk of aneuploidy, infection and neurological abnormality for the fetus diagnosed with isolated mild (10.1-12.0 mm) to moderate (12.1-15.0 mm) cerebral ventriculomegaly and to compare the neurological outcome between symmetrical vs. asymmetrical and stable vs. progressive ventriculomegaly.

Methods: A systematic review was conducted. Literature was identified by searching two bibliographical databases between 1980 and 2009 without language restrictions. The data extracted were inspected for heterogeneity. Overall rates and confidence intervals (CIs) for each prognostic factor were calculated. When comparative data existed, the odds ratio (OR) was calculated.

Results: The search strategy yielded 2150 relevant citations of which 28 studies were included in the review. The overall rate of infection and chromosomal abnormality was 1.5 and 5% (95% CI 3, 7), respectively. The risk of neurological abnormality regardless of karyotype or infection screen was 14% (95% CI 10, 18) and this reduced to 12% (95% CI 9, 15) when both chromosomes and infection screen were normal. The risk of neurological abnormality was significantly lower in stable compared to progressive ventriculomegaly [OR 0.29 (95% CI 0.15, 0.58)]. No significant differences were detected when symmetrical vs. asymmetrical ventriculomegaly were compared [OR 0.91 (95% CI 0.34, 2.41)].

Conclusion: This systematic review provides the physician with some estimates of prognosis in cases of isolated mild to moderate ventriculomegaly.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aneuploidy
  • Cerebral Ventricles / abnormalities*
  • Female
  • Fetus / abnormalities*
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infections / congenital
  • Nervous System Malformations / diagnosis
  • Odds Ratio
  • Pregnancy
  • Prognosis
  • Risk Factors