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A Journal on Pediatrics, Neonatology, Adolescent Medicine,
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

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Minerva Pediatrica 2013 August;65(4):371-81

language: Italian

Unidentifid bright objects and neuro-psychiatric disturbances

Bassi B. 1, Vannelli S. 2, Giraudo M. C. 1, Burdino E. 1, Rigardetto R. 1

1 Sezione di Neuropsichiatria Infantile, Dipartimento di Scienze Pediatriche e dell’Adolescenza, Università degli Studi di Torino, Torino, Italia;
2 Struttura Semplice di Auxologia, Ospedale Infantile Regina Margherita, Torino, Italia


Aim: The neurofibromatosis type1 (NF1) is an autosomal dominant neurocutaneous disease. In 40-70% of cases are described signal hyperintensity on MRI, called unidentified bright objects (UBO). Their correlation with clinical disorders is still debated. The present study investigated the correlation between the UBOs and neuropsychiatric outcomes overall, observes the long-term through the comparison of MRI brain and considers the utility of including MRI early in the investigation of NF1.
Methods: We included 100 patients (age 2-18 years) with NF1. The parents were given a medical questionnaire to fill, a clinical neurologic examination (Touwen) was performed and brain MRI were analyzed during the years.
Results: In 72% of cases were detected UBO’s last MRI. It was observed that the UBO’s tend to shrink over time and in some cases to disappear in pre-adolescent. There were significant correlations between UBOs and minor disturbances in motor function (P=0.004) and between UBO’s and cognitive deficits (P=0.016). The 79.62% of the patients is followed by a specialist in neuropsychiatry, as correlated significantly (P=0.027) with changes on MRI.
Conclusions: Given the correlation between UBO’s, neurological disorders, cognitive and behavioral, suggest be included in the diagnostic protocol MRI brain areas as T2H can be considered predictive for a neuropsychiatric disorder.

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