Welcome to Just Answer. I am an Adult Neurologist and was contacted to answer your question.
I am here to answer you question on chat if you are online
I just need to know what these results mean, and if they need following up. Thanks.
so this is a typical change seen in patients your age. the FLAIR hyperintensities are little areas of lipohyalinosis
areas in the arterioles or small blood vessels, where there is a tiny accumulation of lipids
that cause this change
it is a non specific finding, and is seen in migraine headaches
hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking
a family history or small vessel disease can also cause these to appear
but this is the most common finding seen on MRI's in "normal" patients
Thank you. I have been suffering from bad headaches and have put these down to the menopause. Also my mother (aged 84) has vascular disease, so is it possible that this is an "inherited" condition?
Also, what steps, if any, should I take to prevent any further problems in this are?
I would not say you need follow up with a neurologist, unless you are having neurological symptoms
yes, this could be an inherited condition
but it would usually be worse than what is described in this report
in terms or prevention
you need to treat the underlying condition
so if it is migraine, you treat that
or any of the other issues I described above
studies have shown
that this type of change, although really not serious at this point
has been linked to a higher risk of stroke or heart attack later in life
so if your mother has vascular disease
you may be following in her footprints, at least that is possible
so you should consider aspirin therapy, or adding Plavix (clopidogrel)
or if this is migraine, you need to aggressively treat your migraine problem
we always think of migraine as benign, but the risk of stroke is higher in this group
later in life
Thanks - so maybe a follow-up in say 5 years?
yes, I would say 1 to 2 years
to see if this has progressed in terms of the number of UBO's (we call them unidentified bright objects)
it the number is XXXXX going up
you need to consider treatment like I mentioned
Would any of this have caused the dizziness I've been experiencing?
this is linked to dizziness, especially if your blood pressure is going up
but I noted the sinus issue
do you have sinusitis?
that could be your dizziness
Well my blood pressure is quite low, so I know that's not an issue.
Not sure about the sinusitis.... my husband says I sound congested at night though (snoring).
other conditions, like hypothyroidism
has been linked to this as well, how is your thyroid?
No - I'm normally very healthy - eat a good balanced diet and exercise daily.
well I am guessing, but if you snore, and have headaches
you need an evaluation for sleep apnea
that also can cause this change in the brain MRI
I did have a sleep study - it said no apnea, but restless legs. I have horrible insomnia though.
well your MRI is no big deal
but it indicative of what is going on
OK - well I think I have enough information to go forward now. Thanks for your help!
come back anytime
Dr Frank T
Thanks and goodbye.