Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Posterior Fossa Syndrome

  • Jennifer TinkerEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_149


Posterior fossa syndrome is characterized by a heterogeneous presentation of symptoms following cerebellar tumor resection in children. Cerebellar mutism, followed by a period of significant dysarthria, is the most common aspect of this syndrome. Other well-documented symptoms include emotional lability, behavioral disturbance, and bizarre personality changes. Oropharyngeal dyspraxia, impaired initiation of complex voluntary movements, oculomotor apraxia, and psychomotor retardation have also been reported (Pollack 2001). These symptoms normally begin 1–5 days postoperatively and typically resolve over the following months. The syndrome is thought to be attributed to lesions of the dentate nuclei or vermis. Large midline tumors that require incision of the vermis are at greatest risk for the postsurgical development of posterior fossa syndrome (Turkel et al. 2004). In a prospective series examining medulloblastoma resection outcome, one quarter of patients developed...

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References and Readings

  1. Pollack, I. F. (2001). Neurobehavioral abnormalities after posterior fossa surgery in children. International Review of Psychiatry, 13(4), 302–312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Robertson, P. L., Muraszko, K. M., Holmes, E. J., Sposto, R., Packer, R. J., Gajjar, A., Dias, M. S., & Allen, J. C. (2006). Incidence and severity of postoperative cerebellar mutism syndrome in children with medulloblastoma: A prospective study by the Children’s oncology group. Journal of Neurosurgery, 105(6 Suppl), 444–451.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Turkel, S. B., Chen, L. S., Nelson, M. D., Hyder, D. H., Gilles, F. H., Woodall, L., et al. (2004). Case series: Acute mood symptoms associated with posterior fossa lesions in children. The Journal of Clinical Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, 16, 443–445.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeurologyThomas Jefferson UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA