Skeletal Radiology

, Volume 26, Issue 3, pp 155–160 | Cite as

Fibrolipomatous hamartoma: MR imaging findings

  • M. De Maeseneer
  • S. Jaovisidha
  • L. Lenchik
  • D. Witte
  • M. E. Schweitzer
  • D. J. Sartoris
  • D. Resnick



To analyze the MR imaging features of fibrolipomatous hamartoma (FLH) of nerves.

Design and patients

MR imaging studies from six patients (three men and three women) were retrospectively reviewed by three musculo-skeletal radiologists. In four patients, a biopsy of the nerve lesion was performed. In two patients, biopsy data were unavailable and the diagnosis was based on the clinical history combined with the MR imaging findings.

Results and conclusion

MR imaging demonstrated fusiform nerve enlargement that was caused by fatty proliferation and thickening of nerve bundles. Nerve bundles appeared as serpentine tubular structures, hypoin-tense on both T1- and T2-weighted images. The degree of fatty proliferation varied among patients. In addition, significant variation in the distribution of fat along the course of the nerves was noted. In three patients, FLH followed the branching pattern of the nerves, a characteristic pathologic finding. In two patients, intramuscular fat deposition (biceps and tibialis posterior muscles) was present. MR imaging findings of FLH are typical, allowing a confident diagnosis. The variation of fatty proliferation among patients and involved nerves as well as the tendency of the abnormalities to follow the branching pattern of the nerves is well demonstrated with MR imaging. FLH may present as an isolated nerve lesion, may be associated with intramuscular fat deposition, or may occur as a feature of macrodystrophia lipomatosa (MDL).

Key words

Fibrolipomatous hamartoma Macrodystrophia lipomatosa Magnetic resonance imaging Peripheral nerve disease Lipofibromatous hamartoma Median nerve 


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Copyright information

© International Skeletal Society 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. De Maeseneer
    • 1
  • S. Jaovisidha
    • 1
  • L. Lenchik
    • 1
  • D. Witte
    • 2
  • M. E. Schweitzer
    • 3
  • D. J. Sartoris
    • 1
  • D. Resnick
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RadiologyVeterans Affairs Medical Center and University of CaliforniaSan DiègoUSA
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyBaptist Memorial HospitalMemphisUSA
  3. 3.Department of RadiologyThomas Jefferson University HospitalPhiladelphiaUSA

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