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Necrosis of the fetal brain stem with cerebellar hypoplasia

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Two neonates are presented with intrauterine necrosis of the brain stem. In one the necrosis and calcification were multifocal and extended from the thalamus to the medulla oblongata. In the other the process was limited to the medulla, but was associated with severe hypoplasia of the nuclei pontis. In both cases the cerebellum was hypoplastic and immature for the gestational age. The connection between the two lesions remains obscure, and two hypotheses are discussed. One hypothesis ascribes the delay in cerebellar development to subliminal damage caused by the same insult that produced the brain-stem lesions, the other considers the possible effects of partial deafferentation on the maturation of the cerebellum.

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Correspondence to M. Kaarsoo Herrick.

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Gessaga, E.C., Herrick, M.K. & Urich, H. Necrosis of the fetal brain stem with cerebellar hypoplasia. Acta Neuropathol 69, 326–331 (1986). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00688312

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Key words

  • Congenital brain malformation
  • Brain stem necrosis
  • Cerebellum hypoplasia
  • Cerebellum immaturity