Normal-pressure hydrocephalus: evaluation with cerebrospinal fluid flow measurements at MR imaging

Radiology. 1996 Feb;198(2):523-9. doi: 10.1148/radiology.198.2.8596861.


Purpose: To evaluate magnetic resonance (MR) imaging-based quantitative phase-contrast cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) velocity imaging for prediction of successful shunting in patients with normal-pressure hydrocephalus (NPH).

Materials and methods: Eighteen patients (mean age, 73 years) with NPH underwent routine MR imaging and CSF velocity MR imaging before ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunting. The calculated CSF stroke volume and the aqueductal CSF flow void score were compared with the surgical results.

Results: All 12 patients with CSF stroke volumes greater than 42 microL responded favorably to CSF shunting. Of the six patients with stroke volumes of 42 microL or less, three improved with shunting while three did not. The relationship between CSF stroke volume greater than 42 microL and favorable response to VP shunting was statistically significant (P < .05). There was no statistically significant relationship between aqueductal CSF flow void score and responsiveness to shunting.

Conclusion: CSF velocity MR imaging is useful in the selection of patients with NPH to undergo shunt formation.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cerebral Aqueduct / pathology
  • Cerebrospinal Fluid / physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydrocephalus, Normal Pressure / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Hydrocephalus, Normal Pressure / diagnosis*
  • Hydrocephalus, Normal Pressure / surgery*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ventriculoperitoneal Shunt*