Central nervous system lesions in Fanconi anemia: Experience from a research center for Fanconi anemia patients

AKSU T., GÜMRÜK F., Bayhan T., Coskun C., Oguz K. K., ÜNAL Ş.

PEDIATRIC BLOOD & CANCER, vol.67, no.12, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 67 Issue: 12
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1002/pbc.28722
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Agricultural & Environmental Science Database, BIOSIS, Biotechnology Research Abstracts, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database
  • Keywords: acquired abnormalities, congenital abnormalities, Fanconi anemia, neuroimaging, vascular lesions
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


Background Brain atrophy, abnormal pituitary morphology, corpus callosum, and posterior fossa abnormalities have been described in patients with Fanconi anemia (FA). We aimed to provide an overview of cranial neuroimaging findings and to evaluate the clinical implications in FA patients. Procedure Cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies of 34 patients with FA were retrospectively evaluated, and patients' clinical data were correlated with the imaging findings. Results The patients' median age was 17.6 (range, 3.9-28) years. At least one pathological brain imaging finding was demonstrated in 22 (65%) patients. These findings included corpus callosum abnormalities and other related supratentorial malformations in nine, pituitary abnormalities in eight, craniovertebral junction and posterior fossa abnormalities in eight, vascular lesions in six, and intracerebral calcifications in two patients. Among the 22 patients who had abnormal cranial MRI findings, six (27%) had mild to moderate intellectual disability (ID), three (14%) had epilepsy, one (5%) had mild hearing loss, and one patient (5%) had hemiplegia. Among these 34 patients, 14 (41%) were transfusion dependent. There was no significant difference between patients with congenital and acquired neuroimaging findings and patients with normal neuroimaging regarding transfusion dependency. Conclusions Acquired abnormalities in brain tissue, such as white matter intensity changes, white matter T2 hyperintense discrete foci, or infarcts along with congenital abnormalities, were identified in this study. Variable abnormal brain imaging findings in FA patients, although some were not associated with clinical neurological manifestations, suggest that brain imaging could be part of screening in FA.