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Free Content Intracranial tuberculomas in patients with tuberculous meningitis: predictors and prognostic significance

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SETTING: Intracranial tuberculomas are commonly observed neuroimaging abnormalities in tuberculous meningitis (TBM).

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the predictors and prognostic significance of tuberculomas in patients with TBM.

DESIGN: In a retrospective follow-up study, contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging was performed at study inclusion and after 9 months of follow-up. Univariate analysis and multivariate analysis were used to identify predictive factors for tuberculoma. Prognosis (death and severe disability) was assessed using the modified Rankin scale.

RESULTS: At inclusion, 43 of 110 patients had cerebral tuberculomas. Seven patients developed paradoxical tuberculomas. Predictors of tuberculomas were raised cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) protein (>3 g/l) and meningeal enhancement. Multivariate analysis did not show any significant predictors. During follow-up, the only significant predictor of paradoxical development of tuberculomas was raised CSF protein (>3 g/l). After 9 months of follow-up, 32 patients had died or had severe disability. Survival analysis revealed that patients with tuberculomas and those without tuberculomas had a similar prognosis.

CONCLUSION: Tuberculomas occurred in approximately 39% of the patients with TBM. Significant predictors were meningeal enhancement and raised CSF protein. TBM patients with or without tuberculomas had a similar prognosis.

Keywords: Mycobacterium tuberculosis; neuroimaging; tuberculoma; tuberculosis; tuberculous meningitis

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: Department of Neurology, Chhatrapati Shahuji Maharaj Medical University, Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow, India

Publication date: February 1, 2011

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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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