Relationship of cranial midline shift to outcome of very-low-birth-weight infants with periventricular hemorrhagic infarction

J Neuroimaging. 1994 Oct;4(4):212-7. doi: 10.1111/jon199444212.


The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship of a cranial midline shift accompanying periventricular hemorrhagic infarction to subsequent handicap in very-low-birth-weight infants. A study group of 44 infants with intraventricular hemorrhage and an associated periventricular hemorrhagic infarction was retrospectively selected from 1,080 very-low-birth-weight infants evaluated by cranial sonography. A cranial midline shift is defined sonographically as displacement of the septum pellucidum (or cavum septi pellucidi) more than 3 mm from the spatial midline. The midline is measured as half the distance between the right and left inner tables on an anterior coronal view. Other sonographic data recorded were the size of the lateral ventricle, the intracranial hemisphere, and the periventricular hemorrhagic infarction. Also noted was the appearance of the area of infarction at the time of initial detection of a midline shift. After discharge, the infants were periodically evaluated for major handicap in vision, hearing, cognition, and motor activity. A midline shift was identified in 29 (66%) of 44 infants with periventricular hemorrhagic infarction. Seven (24%) of the 29 infants with midline shift and 3 (20%) of the 15 infants without a midline shift died. In all of the 22 surviving infants with a midline shift and in 3 (25%) of 12 survivors without a midline shift, a handicap developed (p < 0.01). As a predictor of handicap, midline shift showed a sensitivity of 88% and a specificity of 100%. Predictability was not improved by combining midline shift with the size of the parenchymal infarct.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

MeSH terms

  • Cerebral Hemorrhage / complications
  • Cerebral Hemorrhage / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Infarction / complications
  • Cerebral Infarction / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cerebral Ventricles
  • Echoencephalography*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Low Birth Weight*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies