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Arnold-Chiari Malformation
September 2003

Q. I am considering decompression surgery for Arnold-Chiari malformation. Can you supply me with any information on this?

A. The Arnold-Chiari malformation describes a condition in which the lower part of the brain, the cerebellum, protrudes into the spinal canal and causes neurologic impairment. There are several subtypes of the condition.

Type I affects adolescents and adults and usually causes headaches felt in the back of the head. The headaches may be accompanied by disturbances of vision or coordination. Diagnosis is confirmed by a neurologic exam and testing such as an MRI of the brain. Surgical procedures can be done to relieve the pressure on the brain and relieve the symptoms described.




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