MR imaging of the normal and abnormal clivus

F. Kimura, K. W. Kim, H. Friedman, E. J. Russell, R. Breit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations

Abstract

We retrospectively reviewed 330 T1-weighted sagittal images, 80 T2-weighted sagittal images, and 83 gadopentetate-dimeglumine-enhanced scans of normal adults to determine the MR appearance of the normal adult clivus. MR images of 21 patients with an abnormal clivus (19 with tumor invasion and two with marrow reconversion) were also evaluated retrospectively and compared with those of the control group to assess MR features distinguishing the two groups. Our study revealed that a normal adult clivus consisted of low and high-intensity portions mixed in various proportions on T1-weighted images. The low-intensity portion was isointense or hyperintense relative to the pons and always contained foci of bright signal intensity. The low-intensity tumor of a pathologic clivus tended to be hypointense relative to the pons (17/19), and was completely devoid of foci of bright signal intensity. The normal adult clivus was approximately isointense relative to the pons on T2-weighted images. Clival tumors were grossly hyperintense relative to the pons on T2-weighted images in 11 of 17 patients. In the remaining six patients, either a portion of or the entire lesion was isointense relative to the pons and, therefore, was not detectable on T2-weighted images. A normal adult clivus can enhance to some degree (19/83). Clival tumors were found to enhance intensely. A clivus of very low signal intensity (signal void) on T1- or T2-weighted images was always abnormal. The clivus with marrow reconversion was uniformly hypointense relative to the pons on T1-weighted images and isointense relative to normal marrow on T2-weighted images. The intensity patterns of the normal clivus on T1- and T2-weighted MR images change predictably with advancing age. Intensity patterns of abnormal clivi differ from those of normal clivi. When contrast material is used, normal and abnormal clivi generally show different patterns of enhancement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1285-1291
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Roentgenology
Volume155
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'MR imaging of the normal and abnormal clivus'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this