Blood Pressure Alarms

An Overview Of Intracranial Hypertension

Intracranial hypertension is a rare medical condition. It is also known as Benign Intracranial Hypertension or Idiopathic Intracranial hypertension. The cerebrospinal fluid is a protective and nourishing fluid that circulates around the brain and spinal cord. Under normal circumstances it is drained away and replaced continuously. In case of intracranial hypertension, this process gets affected. It leads to a build up of excess fluid causing high blood pressure.

This condition is also referred to as Pseudotumour Cerebri, because the symptoms are similar to that of a brain tumor, while actually that there is no tumor present. There are no known causes for this condition, but some of the factors may include oral contraception, pregnancy, obesity, Vitamin A or steroid withdrawal. It most commonly occurs in women of childbearing age, but is not restricted to them only. It may also occur in thin people or men as for that matter.

Any disorder that causes the flow of the fluid between the brain and its route to the brain to get blocked or obstructed can also lead to this condition.

Some common symptoms of intracranial hypertension include severe headaches, insomnia, memory loss, vomiting, hearing and visual disturbances, double vision, eye movement, back pain, stiff neck and lethargy.

MRI and CT scams along with lumbar puncture to measure the cerebrospinal fluid are often used to diagnose this type of hypertension. Treatment for patients suffering from this condition may be based on surgical procedures or medication..

The surgical treatments used are procedures for lumbar shunting and optic nerve sheath fenestration. Surgical procedures are resorted to only in cases where patients do not respond to the medical treatments.

Medical treatments involve weight loss and medication. The loss of fluid may be accompanying weight loss in such patients, but this fact is not corroborated by findings. Fluid loss may also be achieved by administering medication known as diuretics. Diamox is one of the most commonly prescribed of diuretics to treat such condition.

Frequent eye examination may also be required as untreated and ignored intracranial hypertension can also lead to total blindness.

It becomes important for patients experiencing the above-mentioned symptoms to immediately consult a doctor, because the condition might be intracranial hypertension and may demand immediate medical attention.