Evolutive leukoencephalopathy in congenital cytomegalovirus infection

J Child Neurol. 2015 Jan;30(1):93-5. doi: 10.1177/0883073813514292. Epub 2014 Jan 21.


Congenital cytomegalovirus infection is the most common infectious cause of congenital brain injury. Type and severity of congenital cytomegalovirus infection-related brain abnormalities depend on the developmental stage of the central nervous system at the time of fetal infection. The aim of this study was to follow the course of leukoencephalopathy in a patient with congenital cytomegalovirus infection. We describe brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings of a boy with symptomatic congenital cytomegalovirus infection performed at the age of 3 weeks, 13 months, and 4 and 7 years. Neonatal brain MRI showed most of characteristic findings in congenital cytomegalovirus infection with most prominent white matter abnormalities and cortical dysplasia. MRI follow-up images showed that cortical dysgenesis remained unchanged and static, whereas white matter abnormalities evolved over the years. We propose that leukoencephalopathy in congenital cytomegalovirus infection is not only nonprogressive or static but even evolutive and suggests both underlying disruption and delay of myelination.

Keywords: congenital cytomegalovirus infection; leukoencephalopathy; microcephaly; neuroimaging.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Brain / pathology
  • Child
  • Cytomegalovirus Infections / complications*
  • Cytomegalovirus Infections / congenital*
  • Developmental Disabilities / pathology
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Leukoencephalopathies / etiology*
  • Leukoencephalopathies / pathology
  • Leukoencephalopathies / virology*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male