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Idiopathic intracranial hypertension 

Idiopathic intracranial hypertension
Idiopathic intracranial hypertension

David Sayer

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date: 16 April 2021

Idiopathic intracranial hypertension has also been called benign intracranial hypertension (despite not running a benign course) and pseudotumour cerebri. The clinical and imaging features of the syndrome are of raised intracranial pressure (ICP) without dilated ventricles or intracranial mass lesions but with evidence of papilloedema. In 90% of cases this affects obese women with an incidence of 3.5/100 000 in the 20-44 age group. This chapter discusses the diagnosis and management of Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension. This is a poorly understood condition, and the natural history is variable. It may be self-limiting, intermittent or progressively worse. Approximately a third of patients are in each of these categories. The worst complication is visual loss and can be severe in up to 25% of patients. The variety of management options available demonstrates that there is no single therapy which works for all patients and treatment needs to be directed by the patient’s response.

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