Low-Field Magnetic Resonance Imaging Findings in Children with Seizures in Ibadan, Nigeria
Background: Seizure is the most common neurological disorder in children and an important cause of paediatric hospital admission with the highest prevalence in the under-five age group. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is the neuro-imaging technique of choice in the initial evaluation of children with epilepsy. High-field MRI is the ideal imaging modality for evaluating seizures but this is not readily available in developing countries.
Objective: To analyse the spectrum of MRI findings in children presenting with seizures using a low-field (0.36T) MRI.
Methods: Children aged ≤18years with seizures, with cranial MRI at the University College Hospital (UCH), Nigeria between January 2013 and June 2015 were retrospectively reviewed.
Results: There were a total of 134 patients with 53% as adolescents and most of them (85; 63.4%) had abnormal cranial MRI findings. More male children had abnormal findings (52; 61.2%) and most abnormal findings (42; 49.4%) were reported among adolescents. The most frequent abnormality was hydrocephalus (23.5%) from various causes followed by cerebral tumours (14.1%) and ischaemic cerebral infarcts (11.8%). In the adolescents, intracranial tumours (21.4%) were the most frequent abnormal findings, while hydrocephalus was commoner in children aged less than 10 years, accounting for 33.3% and 36.0% among the 1-5 years and 6-11 years age groups respectively.
Conclusion: Low-field MRI, which is more readily available, can provide substantial preliminary findings to aid the management of children with epilepsies. Improved access to high-field MRI through cost reduction and early MR imaging evaluation in the course of illness are desirable.
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