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Free Content Intracranial tuberculoma in Kuwait

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Objective: To study the manifestations of intracranial tuberculoma in Kuwait and to provide guidelines for the diagnosis and management of intracranial tuberculoma in developing countries, where the disease is common and facilities are limited.

Design: Data were collected from patients with intracranial space-occupying lesions admitted to Adan Hospital Medical Department and the Neurosurgery and Neuromedical Departments at Ibn-Sina Hospital, Kuwait, from January 1987 to December 1995.

Results: Intracranial tuberculomas represented 1.4% of all cases with intracranial space-occupying lesions in these hospitals (13/925); 77% of the patients were males, and seizures were the most frequent presenting symptom. Nine patients (66.6%) responded well to medical treatment and four (33.3%) failed to respond. Those who responded to medical treatment showed remarkable improvement of the intracranial lesions within 6 weeks, and almost complete resolution within 12 weeks. Seven patients required surgery, three due to failure of medical treatment. We report a patient who needed emergency shunt operation, a patient with pituitary tuberculoma, and two patients whose lesions recurred several years after surgery.

Conclusion: Bearing in mind the non-specific nature of computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging in the diagnosis of intracranial tuberculoma, and the lack of advanced neurosurgical facilities in developing countries where the disease is common, we recommend a 6-week therapeutic test for patients with solitary or multiple enhancing intracranial space-occupying lesions without mass effect. Stereotactic biopsy is recommended in selected cases wherever facilities are available.
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Keywords: Kuwait; intracranial tuberculosis; management of intracranial tuberculoma; seizures and tuberculoma; tuberculoma of the brain; tuberculosis

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: Medical Department, Adan Hospital, Kuwait 2: Neurosurgery Department, Ibn-Sina Hospital, Kuwait

Publication date: 1998-05-01

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  • The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease publishes articles on all aspects of lung health, including public health-related issues such as training programmes, cost-benefit analysis, legislation, epidemiology, intervention studies and health systems research. The IJTLD is dedicated to the continuing education of physicians and health personnel and the dissemination of information on tuberculosis and lung health world-wide.

    Certain IJTLD articles are selected for translation into French, Spanish, Chinese or Russian. They are available on the Union website

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