Intracranial hypotension presenting with severe encephalopathy

Carter E. Beck, Norman W. Rizk, Lydia T. Kiger, David Spencer, Laureen Hill, John R. Adler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


A patient with severe and protracted symptoms from intracranial hypotension is described. The patient's presentation was marked by diffuse encephalopathy and profound depression of consciousness. This case report expands the presently known clinical spectrum of this uncommon and generally benign illness. The clinical and laboratory findings typically observed in the syndrome of intracranial hypotension are outlined. The pathophysiological mechanisms of the phenomenon are briefly discussed. Intracranial hypotension is a potentially severe illness with specific treatments that are distinct from the treatment of most neurological diseases. Three cardinal features - postural headache, pachymeningitis, and descent of midline cerebral structures - should prompt the diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)470-473
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Cerebrospinal fluid leak
  • Encephalopathy
  • Intracranial hypotension
  • Pachymeningitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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