• Francisco de Asís Bravo-RodríguezEmail author
  • Rocío Díaz-Aguilera
Part of the Learning Imaging book series (LEARN)


Arachnoid cysts, also called leptomeningeal cysts, are congenital, benign, space-occupying cystic lesions that occur in the cerebrospinal axis in relation to the arachnoid membrane. They usually contain clear fluid that resembles cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) although they do not communicate with the ventricular system. Most cysts are unilateral, smoothly rounded, and adhere loosely to the dura. Their size ranges from small incidentally found cysts to large space-occupying lesions. Arachnoid cysts represent approximately 1% of all nontraumatic intracranial masses. The most common location is the floor of the middle cranial fossa, particularly anteriorly and parasagittally in the interhemispheric fissure. Cysts in the middle cranial fossa are more frequent in males than in females (ratio 3:1) and they occur predominantly on the left side. Other locations of arachnoid cysts include the suprasellar/chiasmatic site (cysts in this location may cause endocrinopathy); the cerebellopontine angle (11%); the quadrigeminal plate cistern (10%); in relationship with the vermis (9%); and in the prepontine/interpeduncular cistern (3%).


Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy Arachnoid Cyst Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy Herpes Simplex Encephalitis Intracranial Hypotension 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Francisco de Asís Bravo-Rodríguez
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rocío Díaz-Aguilera
    • 2
  1. 1.Diagnostic and Therapeutics NeuroradiolgyReina Sofía University HospitalCórdobaSpain
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyAlto Guadalquivir HospitalAndújar, JaénSpain

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