Rigmor Jensen, Hanne Yri, Maria Schmidt Uldall, Inger Jansen Olesen
Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) is an intriguing, clinical condition of increased intracranial pressure without pathological, laboratory or radiological evidence of intracranial pathology in young, obese individuals. The clinical symptoms are severe headache, pulsatile tinnitus, transitory visual obscurations and diplopia. Demographic studies report a rapidly increasing incidence of IIH in obese young females and with the global epidemic increase of obesity a significant increase in the number of IIH patients in Denmark can be predicted. Severe obesity is closely related to a number of neuroendocrinological changes which have still not been evaluated in IIH. Untreated IIH may lead to severe visual loss and blindness resulting from damage to the optic nerve and chronic disabling headache. The mechanism whereby IIH leads to optic nerve dysfunction is poorly understood but it seems to be closely linked to oedema of the optic nerve head and the associated elevation of hydrostatic pressure inside the optic nerve.
A PhD study from this group has analysed the clinical presentation in more than 40 patients detail and their headache characteristics, provided new suggestions for diagnostic criteria and tested their cognitive function before and after treatment. Our new study of IIH thus comprise neurobiological and ophthalmological aspects is a unique study of still unsolved aspects in IIH.
A new experimental PhD study of the mechanisms of IIH has also been initiated in the research park. A reliable animal model for measuring the intracranial pressure over time has been developed and we continue the search for a better understanding of the CSF dynamics and regulation as well as for the understanding of the molecular basis for IIH.
Long term follow-up of patients with idiopathic intracranial hypertension, ophthalmological and neurobiological aspects. Biomarkers in idiopathic intracranial hypertension. Experimental models of idiopathic intracranial hypertension and mechanisms of water transport in the brain.
Steffen Hamann and Marianne Wegener, Department of Opthalmology, Glostrup Hospital. Marianne Juhler and Anders Skjolding, Department of Neurosurgery, National Hospital, Denmark and the Copenhagen CSF study Group. Alexandra Sinclair and her CSF-research group, University of Birmingham, UK.