Arachnoid cysts are cerebrospinal fluid-filled sacs that are located between the brain or spinal cord and the arachnoid membrane, one of the three membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord. Primary arachnoid cysts are present at birth and are the result of developmental abnormalities in the brain and spinal cord that arise during the early weeks of gestation. Arachnoid cysts involving the spinal cord are rarer. The location and size of the cyst determine the symptoms and when those symptoms begin. Most individuals with arachnoid cysts develop symptoms before the age of 20, and especially during the first year of life, but some people with arachnoid cysts never have symptoms.
Arachnoid Cysts | Definition and Patient Education
Arachnoid cysts are benign, fluid-filled sacs in the brain or spine. The three most common surgical treatments for arachnoid cysts in the brain are craniotomy fenestration, endoscopic cyst fenestration or shunt placement. The nonsurgical treatment is close observation of the cyst. Usually, arachnoid cysts develop between the surface of the brain and the skull base, or on the arachnoid membrane, one of the three membranes that cover the brain and the spinal cord.
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Robert L. Martuza, Robert G. Ojemann, John Shillito, James G. Two cases of anterior middle fossa arachnoid cyst associated with facial pain are reported. In one case a cystoperitoneal shunt provided pain relief: in the other case, no operation was necessary.