The significance of fetal ventriculomegaly: etiology, short- and long-term outcomes



Fetal cerebral ventriculomegaly (VM) is diagnosed when the width of one or both ventricles, measured at the level of the glomus of the choroid plexus (atrium), is ≥ 10 mm. VM can result from different processes: abnormal turnover of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), neuronal migration disorders, and destructive processes. In a high percentage of cases, it is associated with structural malformations of the central nervous system (CNS), but also of other organs and systems. The rate of associated malformations is higher (≥60%) in severe VM (>15 mm) and lower (10–50%) in cases of borderline VM (10–15 mm). When malformations are not present, aneuploidies are found in 3–15% of borderline VM; the percentage is lower in severe VM. The neurodevelopmental outcome of isolated VM is normal in > 90% of cases if the measurement of ventricular width is between 10 and 12 mm; it is less favorable when the measurement is > 12 mm. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.