Gliomatosis cerebri

Gliomatosis cerebri (infiltrative diffuse astrocytosis) is a rare primary brain tumor. It is commonly characterized by diffuse infiltration of the brain with neoplastic glial cells that affect various areas of the cerebral lobes. Glimatosis Cerebi behaves like a malignant tumor that is very similar to Glioblastoma.

While gliomatosis cerebri can occur at any age, it is generally found in the third and fourth decades of life.

Before the advent of MRI, diagnosis was generally not established until autopsy. Even with MRI, however, diagnosis is difficult. Typically, gliomatosis cerebri appears as a diffuse, poorly circumscribed, infiltrating non-enhancing lesion that is hyperintense on T2-weighted images and expands the cerebral white matter. It is difficult to distinguish from highly infiltrative anaplastic astrocytoma or GBM.

Axial fluid-attenuated inversion recovery MRI image demonstrating tumor-related infiltration involving both temporal lobes (Short arrow), and the substantia nigra (Long arrow).

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