Early MRI findings in high grade glioma

Howard J. Landy, Thomas T. Lee, Priscilla Potter, Lynn Feun, Arnold Markoe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is more sensitive than computerized tomography in the detection of many intracerebral lesions; however, the significance of some MRI findings may be unclear. Over four years, nine patients, aged 40-79 years, have been encountered whose initial MRI scans were negative or had minimal abnormalities and soon thereafter had high grade glioma. Initial MRI was performed in eight patients for new-onset seizures and one patient for a focal deficit. MRI was negative in four of the patients and mildly abnormal in five of the patients (small areas of increased T2 and/or minimal enhancement). The initial diagnoses usually included inconclusive differentials of stroke and infection with neoplasm less frequently considered. Radiographic progression leading to the diagnosis of high grade glioma became evident on repeat MRI in 1-8 months with six patients showing progression within three months. All patients underwent surgery and had histologic diagnosis of glioma. Although MRI is quite sensitive, four of the initial scans were negative with reasonable quality studies. Conversely, in five of the initial scans, the tumors were detected when so small that the radiographic findings were not typically diagnostic. Glioma must be considered as a possible cause of initial seizures or new neurologic deficits in adults with normal or minimally abnormal MRI. In this group, seizures were the overwhelming hallmark of presentation. In such a clinical situation, close follow-up with short interval repeat MRI should be performed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)65-72
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of neuro-oncology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 27 2000


  • Glioma
  • Magnetic resonance imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology
  • Neuroscience(all)


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