Neuroradiology

, Volume 54, Issue 6, pp 615–621

Comparing quantitative tractography metrics of motor and sensory pathways in children with periventricular leukomalacia and different levels of gross motor function

  • Dong-wook Rha
  • Won Hyuk Chang
  • Jinna Kim
  • Eun Geol Sim
  • Eun Sook Park
Paediatric Neuroradiology

DOI: 10.1007/s00234-011-0996-2

Cite this article as:
Rha, D., Chang, W.H., Kim, J. et al. Neuroradiology (2012) 54: 615. doi:10.1007/s00234-011-0996-2

Abstract

Introduction

The neural tracts responsible for gross motor dysfunction in children with spastic cerebral palsy (CP) caused by periventricular leukomalacia remain unknown. This study investigated both sensory and motor tracts using diffusion tensor tractography (DTT).

Methods

Brain MRIs with diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) performed on 19 children (ten boys and nine girls) with bilateral spastic CP were analyzed. DTT was reconstructed from DTI. Participants were classified according to gross motor function measured with Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS). Those with GMFCS levels I–III comprised the high-functioning group (n = 11), and those with GMFCS levels IV–V comprised the low-functioning group (n = 8). We compared DTT-based metrics, such as fractional anisotropy, apparent diffusion coefficient, and fiber number and volume, between the groups.

Results

In the corticospinal tract, the volume and number of fibers were significantly higher in the high-functioning group (p < 0.001), whereas the fractional anisotropy and apparent diffusion coefficient of the corticospinal tract did not differ significantly between the groups. In the somotosensory tract and posterior thalamic radiation, none of the DTT parameters differed significantly between the groups.

Conclusions

Children with bilateral spastic CP with differing levels of gross motor function have corresponding differences detectable on DTT in their corticospinal tracts but not in their somatosensory tracts and posterior thalamic radiations. In addition, the number and volume of fibers, but not fractional anisotropy values or apparent diffusion coefficients, are lower in the corticospinal tracts in children with low gross motor function than in those with high gross motor function.

Keywords

Cerebral palsy Periventricular leukomalacia Diffusion tensor imaging Diffusion tensor tractography Gross motor function 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dong-wook Rha
    • 1
  • Won Hyuk Chang
    • 2
  • Jinna Kim
    • 3
  • Eun Geol Sim
    • 1
  • Eun Sook Park
    • 1
  1. 1.Department and Research Institute of Rehabilitation MedicineYonsei University College of MedicineSeoulSouth Korea
  2. 2.Department of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, Samsung Medical CenterSungkyunkwan University School of MedicineSeoulSouth Korea
  3. 3.Department of Radiology, Research Institute of Radiological ScienceYonsei University College of MedicineSeoulSouth Korea