1. What is the most likely diagnosis?
A. Prominent convolution markings of the skull
B. Parietal foramina
C. Lacunar skull
D. Venous lake
E. Wormian bones
A. False. Convolutional markings correspond closely to the location and configuration of the cerebral convolutions and probably reflect the localized pressure of the pulsating brain on the inner table of the cranial vault. Prominent convolutional markings of the brain are seen during periods of exuberant brain growth, between 2-3 and 5-7 years of age. The markings decrease in prominence during adolescence.
B. False. The parietal bones often have small defects, called parietal foramina, that are 1mm or less in diameter, and that allow emissary veins to join the saggittal sinus interiorly with the occipital venous branches externally. Occasionally, these defects may be large, as the result of an irregular ossification of the membranous bone. Parietal foramina (Catlin marks) are developmental anomalies which affect approximately 1 in 25,000 people. They are thought to be inherited as an autosomal trait and may be associated with other skeletal anomalies such as cleft lip or palate. The majority of enlarged parietal foramina are usually completely asymptomatic.
C. True. This condition presents as multiple well-defined focal areas of bone thinning on the calvarium, resembling a "copper beaten" pattern. This appearance resolves after birth, usually with complete resolution by four or five months of age. The condition is seen in children with myelomeningocoele or sometimes in patients with encephaloceles and hydrocephalus. The cause is unknown.
D. False. Venous lake is a dilatation of the venous drainage within the diploe of the skull
E. False. Wormian bones are commonly seen within the lambdoid suture and occur frequently in infancy. They are generally only considered pathologically significant when greater than 6 x 4 mm in size, greater than ten in number and arranged in a mosaic pattern. There are numerous pathological associations with these small bones. Wormian bones are also seen in the normal population.
2. Which abnormality is not associated with a lacunar skull?
C. Arnold-chiari malformation.
D. Dandy-walker syndrome.
E. Present as a solitary abnormality.
A. Incorrect answer, a lacunar skull is associated with myeloceles
B. incorrect answer, a lacunar skull is associated with encephaloceles
C. incorrect answer, a lacunar skull is associated with Arnold-chiari malformation
D. Correct answer
A lacunar skull is associated with many pathologic conditions including osteogenesis imperfecta, cleidocranial dysplasia, pyknodysostosis, hypophosphatasia, hypothyroidism and acro-osteolysis
E. Incorrect answer, a lacunar skull may present as a solitary abnormality
3. In relation to a lacunar skull which statement is false?
A. The lesion can involve the inner table, diploic space and outer table of the skull.
B. This abnormality is not present in the base of skull and the lower half of the occipital bone.
C. This abnormality should be differentiated from a silver-beaten or copper-beaten skull, resulting from chronically increased intracranial pressure.
D. The hydrocephalus in patients with Arnold-Chiari malformation can cause a lacunar skull.
E. The lacunar skull disappears by 4-6 months of age, regardless of whether intracranial pressure is normal, decreased or increased.
D. False. A hydrocephalus is usually associated with a lacunar skull, but it is not the cause.
A lacunar skull (Lückenschaedel) is almost exclusively associated with meningomyeloceles, meningoceles, and encephaloceles. Occasionally, it can be seen in the absence of any of these abnormalities. The incidence of a lacunar skull in infants under 3 months of age with meningomyelocele and encephalocele is nearly 100 %. The lacunar skull resolves by 4-6 months of age, regardless of whether intracranial pressure is normal, increased or decreased. Hydrocephalus is associated with the lacunar skull, but it is not the cause of the lacunar skull. The lucent areas in the lacunar skull represent areas of defective membranous bone formation, but the precise etiology is unknown. Thinning in the region of the lacunae can involve the inner table, diplöic space or even the outer table. Roentgenographically, it is important to differentiate a lacunar skull from a silver-beaten or copper-beaten skull which are due to chronically increased intracranial pressure.
Swischuk LE. Head, Brain and Meninges. In: Imaging of the Newborn, Infant and Young Child. 4th edn. Williams and Wilkins, Baltimore, Maryland: 934-935.