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Stroke

Help-what does this mean?

09/28/2007

Question:

I have had headaches for over 10 years. Recently had an mri done, got results back saying "Abnormal signal at the left ventricle of the white matter". As i result i have to have another mri done with contrast now. I am very worried, what do these results mean? I got lyme disease 1 year ago, was on antibiotics right away for 10 days for it, could it be that? I also had Henoch Shlonlen Purpura when i was 7 year old, and had a fractured skull when i was being delivered as a baby 30 years ago. Apart from headaches that are over my sinuses, thats really the only symptom i have.

Answer:

White matter changes is a very common finding in the MRI scan. Frequently it is a benign finding such as from migraine headache. Other causes include hypertension, infection, inflammation, trauma and stroke. From your brief description, my impression it is a benign finding in your case. However, because of your history of lyme disease and Henoch Shlonlen Purpura, I recommend referral to an infectious disease specialist and Rheumatologist to exclude lyme disease or inflammatory process.

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Response by:

Yousef  Mohammad, MD, MSc Yousef Mohammad, MD, MSc
Assistant Professor
Director, Stroke Fellowship Program
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University