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Spectrum of magnetic resonance imaging brain findings in developmental delay in children below 5 years of age: an institutional study

MOJ Biology and Medicine
Trupthi Das, Diwakar Doddamani, Avinash M Katur, Namitha A Kumar


Objective: We aimed to determine the prevalence of normal and abnormal findings and evaluate various etiologies of developmental delay as observed on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies of the brain. Methods: This cross-sectional study enrolled 110 pediatric patients (3 months to 5 years) with developmental delay presented to a tertiary care center during a span of 2 y. Neuroimaging with essential sequences was done on a 1.5 T MRI machine. The structures of brain, including ventricles, corpus callosum, gray and white matter, basal ganglia, brainstem, and cerebellum, were systematically evaluated. After assessing the structures, the MRI abnormalities were assigned to different groups based on identifiable causes. These groups included traumatic/neurovascular, metabolic, neurodegenerative, and neoplastic diseases; congenital and developmental disorders; nonspecific findings; and normal brain with no identifiable abnormalities. The data were analyzed using SPSS software. Results: Hypoxic ischemic insult was the most common cause of developmental delay accounting for 32.7% followed by metabolic/ neurodegenerative diseases, which included maple syrup urine disease and Leigh syndrome, accounting for 19.1% of the cases. Neuroimaging was essentially normal in 27.2% of the cases. Corpus callosum was affected in 60.6% of the cases and ventriculomegaly was observed in 62.4% of the cases. Perinatal hypoxic insult was significantly associated with hypoxic ischemic changes in brain (p<0.01). Conclusion: Development delay is one of the most frequent problems encountered in child neurology along with cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Assessment of developmental delay in a nonsyndromic child with MRI neuroimaging is indispensable. 


developmental delay, pediatric neuroradiology, hypoxemic ischemic insult, corpus callosal dysgenesis