Up to 5 years ago, the radiological diagnosis of leukodystrophy was based on computed tomography (CT). More recently, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been used to study pathology of the white matter with great success. The abnormalities in eight patients with different types of leukodystrophy are described, using high-field MRI. CT and MRI show comparable sensitivity in detecting the pathological changes of leukodystrophy. MRI seems to be superior in visualizing the extent of the lesions, their precise anatomical location and any involvement of the brain stem and cerebellum. Differential diagnosis among the three types of leukodystrophy by MRI is difficult but may be attempted by some features. Specific diagnosis can be achieved only by laboratory examination or histology. The role of MRI should be to suggest the proper biochemical test at an earlier stage.
Key wordsLeukodystrophy Magnetic resonance imaging
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