Cerebral Edema Quiz

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Reviewed By:

Benjamin Kummer, MD

Benjamin Kummer, MD (Neurology)

Dr Kummer is Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (ISMMS), with joint appointment in Digital and Technology Partners (DTP) at the Mount Sinai Health System (MSHS) as Director of Clinical Informatics in Neurology. As a triple-board certified practicing stroke neurologist and informaticist, he has successfully improved clinical operations at the point of care by acting as a central liaison between clinical neurology faculty and DTP teams to implement targeted EHR configuration changes and workflows, as well as providing subject matter expertise on health information technology projects across MSHS. | Dr Kummer also has several years’ experience building and implementing several informatics tools, presenting scientific posters, and generating a body of peer-reviewed work in “clinical neuro-informatics” – i.e., the intersection of clinical neurology, digital health, and informatics – much of which is centered on digital/tele-health, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. He has spearheaded the Clinical Neuro-Informatics Center in the Department of Neurology at ISMMS, a new research institute that seeks to establish the field of clinical neuro-informatics and disseminate knowledge to the neurological community on the effects and benefits of clinical informatics tools at the point of care.

Shohei Harase, MD

Shohei Harase, MD (Neurology)

Dr. Harase spent his junior and senior high school years in Finland and the U.S. After graduating from the University of Washington (Bachelor of Science, Molecular and Cellular Biology), he worked for Apple Japan Inc. before entering the University of the Ryukyus School of Medicine. He completed his residency at Okinawa Prefectural Chubu Hospital, where he received the Best Resident Award in 2016 and 2017. In 2021, he joined the Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine at the National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, specializing in hyperacute stroke.

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Content updated on Mar 31, 2024

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What is Cerebral Edema?

Brain edema is swelling in the brain tissue due to abnormal fluid accumulation. Edema has several causes including but not limited to stroke, brain abscess, tumor, and head trauma. Symptoms can range from benign in mild cases to life-threatening, and largely depend on the rate of fluid accumulation and other factors. Because the skull is essentially a closed, bony compartment, in severe cases of rapid fluid accumulation, pressure inside the skull increases quickly, which can cause compression of adjacent brain areas. This reduces brain blood flow to compressed tissue, and can result in irreversible brain damage and other consequences of brain compression including coma and/or inability to breathe on one's own.

Typical Symptoms of Cerebral Edema

  • Unable to speak, although I understand what people are saying

  • Seizure

  • Weakness on one side of the body

  • Headache

  • Losing consciousness

  • Double vision

  • Injury to the head

  • Decreased responsiveness/expressiveness

Doctor's Diagnostic Questionson Cerebral Edema

Your doctor may ask these questions to check for this disease:

  • Can you understand others but struggle to express yourself clearly?

  • Have you had a seizure?

  • Are you experiencing an inability to move one side of your body?

  • Do you have headaches or a heavy feeling in your head?

  • Have you temporarily lost consciousness?

Treatmentof Cerebral Edema

Treatment for brain edema targets the underlying cause as well as any life-threatening complications. In severe cases, prompt treatment is required to relieve pressure and restore blood flow to the brain as quickly as possible through a combination of medical and surgical treatments. Medical treatment may include concentrated intravenous solutions such as 3% normal saline or mannitol, which draw fluid out of the brain tissue into the bloodstream. Surgical treatment may include removing part of the skull to permanently relieve the pressure.

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References

  • Badaut J, Zhang J. 17th international conference on Brain Edema and Cellular Injury. J Neurosci Res. 2020 Jan;98(1):5-8. doi: 10.1002/jnr.24540. PMID: 31721292.

    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/jnr.24540

  • Platten M, Wick W. Blood-brain barrier and brain edema. Handb Clin Neurol. 2012;104:53-62. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-444-52138-5.00005-0. PMID: 22230435.

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/B9780444521385000050?via%3Dihub

  • Kaal EC, Vecht CJ. The management of brain edema in brain tumors. Curr Opin Oncol. 2004 Nov;16(6):593-600. doi: 10.1097/01.cco.0000142076.52721.b3. PMID: 15627023.

    https://journals.lww.com/co-oncology/Abstract/2004/11000/The_management_of_brain_edema_in_brain_tumors.14.aspx

User Testimonials

Reviewed By:

Benjamin Kummer, MD

Benjamin Kummer, MD (Neurology)

Dr Kummer is Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (ISMMS), with joint appointment in Digital and Technology Partners (DTP) at the Mount Sinai Health System (MSHS) as Director of Clinical Informatics in Neurology. As a triple-board certified practicing stroke neurologist and informaticist, he has successfully improved clinical operations at the point of care by acting as a central liaison between clinical neurology faculty and DTP teams to implement targeted EHR configuration changes and workflows, as well as providing subject matter expertise on health information technology projects across MSHS. | Dr Kummer also has several years’ experience building and implementing several informatics tools, presenting scientific posters, and generating a body of peer-reviewed work in “clinical neuro-informatics” – i.e., the intersection of clinical neurology, digital health, and informatics – much of which is centered on digital/tele-health, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. He has spearheaded the Clinical Neuro-Informatics Center in the Department of Neurology at ISMMS, a new research institute that seeks to establish the field of clinical neuro-informatics and disseminate knowledge to the neurological community on the effects and benefits of clinical informatics tools at the point of care.

Shohei Harase, MD

Shohei Harase, MD (Neurology)

Dr. Harase spent his junior and senior high school years in Finland and the U.S. After graduating from the University of Washington (Bachelor of Science, Molecular and Cellular Biology), he worked for Apple Japan Inc. before entering the University of the Ryukyus School of Medicine. He completed his residency at Okinawa Prefectural Chubu Hospital, where he received the Best Resident Award in 2016 and 2017. In 2021, he joined the Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine at the National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, specializing in hyperacute stroke.

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