Increased Intracranial Pressure


Cerebral edema, alterations in the amount or the site of brain water, is caused by brain injuries, infection, intoxication, and metabolic encephalopathies. It has been classified as being vascular/interstitial or toxic/cytoplasmic. Excessive brain edema produces increased intracranial pressure, which may cause brain herniation, with displacement of tonsilar, uncal, or cingulate brain tissues into the foramen magnum, posterior fossa, or below the falx, respectively. The herniated brain tissues can compress and interfere with regions of vital brain function (i.e., the brain stem). The gross deformations of brain herniations are not obvious in the brain of an infant with nonfused skull sutures, but the detrimental pressure effects of excessive brain edema may still operate [1].


Cerebral Edema Vasogenic Edema Cytotoxic Edema Stagnant Hypoxia Brain Herniation 
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6 Increased Intracranial Pressure

  1. 1.
    Volpe JJ (2001) Neurology of the newborn, 4th edn. Saunders, Philadelphia, p 780.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Auer RN, Sutherland GR (2002) Hypoxia and related conditions. In: Graham DI, Lantos PL (eds) Greenfields’ neuropathology, 7th edn, Vol I. Arnold, London, pp 233–264.Google Scholar

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© Springer 2007

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