Increase of Brain Volume

Generalized Swelling
Fig. 11.44 Generalized brain edema is present after an overdose of the drug ecstasy. The widths of inner and outer CSF spaces in this 23-year-old addict are significantly reduced.

also lead to atrophy [Fig. 11.43a]. But dehydration or therapy with high-dose steroids [Fig. 11.43b] also causes a loss of brain volume. You go ahead and diagnose brain atrophy in a patient on steroids and check the neurologist's reaction when the brain volume returns to normal a few days after discontinuation of the medication: They'll laugh their heads off and you're the one they will laugh about! Happened to me once, as a matter of fact." Giufeng and Paul prick up their ears, Pierre looks bewildered. "It was early in the training, of course!" Greg adds hastily. "And then there is the other extreme—much more dangerous and relevant in acute care: the increase in brain volume. You can get a generalized brain edema from a drug overdose (Fig. 11.44) or after a prolonged anoxia."

Brain volume can change. Genuine brain atrophy, however, is irreversible. Generalized brain edema may be fatal.

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  • boris
    How to increase brain volume?
    4 years ago

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