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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Arachnoid cysts


Other Names for this Disease
  • Arachnoid cysts, intracranial
  • Intracranial arachnoid cysts
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Symptoms

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What are the signs and symptoms of Arachnoid cysts?

In some cases, arachnoid cysts do not cause any symptoms.[1] The location and size of the cyst in each individual determine whether symptoms occur, as well as when they might begin. Most individuals develop symptoms before age 20, and especially during the first year of life.[2027][2] 

Signs and symptoms of arachnoid cysts that are located around the brain may include headache, nausea, vomiting and and the accumulation of excessive cerebrospinal fluid in the brain (hydrocephalus), resulting in increased intracranial pressure. In rare cases, in some children, an arachnoid cyst can cause malformation of certain cranial bones, resulting in an abnormally enlarged head (macrocephaly). Depending on the location of the cyst within the brain, other symptoms may include seizures, hearing and visual disturbances, vertigo, and difficulties with balance and walking. Neurological signs may be present because arachnoid cysts may cause increased pressure on structures of the brain. Such neurological findings may include developmental delays, behavioral changes, an inability to control voluntary movements (ataxia), difficulties with balance and walking and cognitive impairment. Weakness or paralysis on one side of the body (hemiparesis) has also been reported.[2027][2]

Arachnoid cysts located around the spinal cord can compress the spinal cord or nerve roots and may cause symptoms such as progressive back and leg pain, and/or tingling or numbness in the legs or arms.[2027][2]
Last updated: 1/4/2016

The Human Phenotype Ontology provides the following list of signs and symptoms for Arachnoid cysts. If the information is available, the table below includes how often the symptom is seen in people with this condition. You can use the MedlinePlus Medical Dictionary to look up the definitions for these medical terms.

Signs and Symptoms Approximate number of patients (when available)
Arachnoid cyst -
Autosomal recessive inheritance -
Intellectual disability -
Macrocephaly -
Microcephaly -

Last updated: 5/1/2016

The Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) has collected information on how often a sign or symptom occurs in a condition. Much of this information comes from Orphanet, a European rare disease database. The frequency of a sign or symptom is usually listed as a rough estimate of the percentage of patients who have that feature.

The frequency may also be listed as a fraction. The first number of the fraction is how many people had the symptom, and the second number is the total number of people who were examined in one study. For example, a frequency of 25/25 means that in a study of 25 people all patients were found to have that symptom. Because these frequencies are based on a specific study, the fractions may be different if another group of patients are examined.

Sometimes, no information on frequency is available. In these cases, the sign or symptom may be rare or common.


References
  1. Arachnoid Cysts. National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). March 5, 2015; http://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/arachnoid-cysts/.
  2. NINDS Arachnoid Cysts Information Page. NINDS. September 11, 2015; http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/arachnoid_cysts/arachnoid_cysts.htm.


Other Names for this Disease
  • Arachnoid cysts, intracranial
  • Intracranial arachnoid cysts
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.