Original Article

The Role of Diffusion MR Imaging in Detecting Cerebral Microstructural Changes: Initial Findings in Pediatric Patients with Neurofibromatosis Type 1


  • Sema Aksoy
  • Elif Hocaoğlu
  • Ercan İnci
  • Gülseren Yirik
  • Serap Doğan
  • Sibel Bayramoğlu
  • Tan Cimilli
  • İrem Erdil

Received Date: 03.04.2014 Accepted Date: 02.06.2014 Eur Arc Med Res 2014;30(2):96-100


Brain lesions in Neurofibromatosis type 1 include optic pathway gliomas, cerebral astrocytomas and focal hyperintense areas in T2-weighted MRI. MR with diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) is used to detect white matter abnormalities. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the differences in apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values between normal appearing regions in the NF1 patients and control group.

Material and Methods:

Ten children (3-15 years old) with NF1 and 10 control subjects were evaluated. The MRI examination consisted of routine imaging and diffusion weighted imaging (DWI). Six distinct locations (frontal and parieto-occipital white matter, basal ganglia, thalamus, corpus callosum and midbrain) were selected for the analysis. The ADC values were calculated directly from these automatically generated ADC maps with ROI.


There were statistically significant differences between normal appearing region in the NF1 patients and control group in the ADC values obtained from midbrain and thalamus.


Diffusion MRI allows the characterization of microstructural abnormalities even in some brain regions that appear normal in conventional MR sequences. This will be guiding us in the diagnosis and follow-up of NF-1 disease.

Keywords: neurofibromatozis type 1, ADC, MR, diffusion, white matter