Thursday, March 10, 2011

Banana sign

On ultrasound scan performed prior to birth, the fetal cerebellum may appear compressed and curved like a banana. This banana sign may indicate the presence of spina bifida where the neural tube, the precursor of the central nervous system (brain & spinal cord), has failed to close, usually in the lower back region.
In the common form of spina bifida – myelomeningocele – patients may have bladder and bowel dysfunction, loss of sensation below the level of the lesion as well as an excess of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain’s ventricles (hydrocephalus).
Benacerraf BR, Stryker J, Frigoletto FD: Abnormal US Appearance of the Cerebellum (Banana Sign): Indirect Sign of Spina Bifida. Radiology 1989, 171(1):151-3. Go to reference

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