The corpus callosum in communicating and noncommunicating hydrocephalus

Neuroradiology. 1995 Apr;37(3):212-8. doi: 10.1007/BF01578260.


To investigate morphological changes in the corpus callosum in hydrocephalus and to correlate them with clinical findings we studied sagittal T2*-weighted cine MR images of 163 patients with hydrocephalus. The height, length and cross-sectional area of the corpus callosum were measured and related to the type of cerebrospinal fluid flow anomaly and to clinical features, especially dementia. With expansion of the lateral ventricles the corpus callosum showed mainly elevation of its body and, to a lesser degree, increase in length. Upward bowing was more pronounced in noncommunicating than in communicating hydrocephalus. Dorsal impingement on the corpus callosum by the free edge of the falx correlated with the height of the corpus callosum. Cross-sectional area did not correlate with either height, length or impingement; it was, however, the strongest anatomical discriminator between demented and nondemented patients. The area of the corpus callosum was significantly smaller in patients with white matter disease. Our findings suggest that, due to its plasticity, the corpus callosum can to some degree resist distortion in hydrocephalus. Dementia, although statistically related to atrophy of the corpus callosum, is possibly more directly related to white matter disease.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Corpus Callosum / anatomy & histology
  • Corpus Callosum / pathology*
  • Dementia / etiology
  • Dementia / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydrocephalus / complications
  • Hydrocephalus / pathology*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged