Which physical findings are characteristic of intracranial masses in pediatric headache?

Updated: Jan 02, 2019
  • Author: J Ivan Lopez, MD, FAAN, FAHS; Chief Editor: George I Jallo, MD  more...
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Answer

Patients with headaches due to an intracranial mass often have focal neurologic abnormalities, especially if they have had headaches for several months. These abnormalities include papilledema, sixth-nerve palsy, ataxia, spasticity of the lower extremities, and indications of brain dysfunction regarding language, motor control, or vision (depending on the location of the lesion). Early in the course of the mass lesion, the physical examination findings may be normal. Children with intracranial abscesses may have alteration of the level of consciousness only during the acute presentation.


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