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Choroid Plexus Cysts
Submitted by Jonathon Dorff, MD


  • Cyst-like spaces that occur in the choroid in approximately 1-6% of fetuses between 13 and 24 weeks gestation
  • Majority are small and incidental, disappearing by 26 weeks gestation
  • Thought to represent entrapment of cerebrospinal fluid within an in-folding of neuroepithelium
  • May be associated with chromosomal abnormalities, especially trisomy 18
    • Likelihood ratio of trisomy 18 with isolated choroid plexus cyst ranges from 0.03 to 13.8 times the motherís background risk
    • Trisomy 18 is almost always associated with other structural abnormalities
    • When a choroid plexus cyst is identified
      • In addition to the routine anatomic survey, a targeted search for structural abnormalities should be performed
    • Amniocentesis should be offered when a fetus has both a choroid plexus cyst and additional structural abnormalities

        Rare cases of symptomatic choroid plexus cysts causing obstructive hydrocephalus have been reported


Two images form an unenhanced axial CT of the brain show
 ring-like calcifications in the region of the choroid plexus representing choroid plexus cysts


Middleton, William D., etc: Ultrasound: The Requisites, 2nd edition, 2004.
Rumack, Carol, etc: Diagnostic Ultrasound, 3rd edition, 2005.