Spontaneous resolution of a massive pseudomeningocoele

Published online: Apr 27 2009

Andrew Clarke, Michael Hutton

From Princess Elizabeth Orthopaedic Centre, Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, Exeter, Devon, United Kingdom


A pseudomeningocoele is an extradural collection of cerebrospinal fluid which results from a dural or arachnoid tear. The fluid is not contained within a protrusion of the meninges, which is typical for a real meningocoele. Although most pseudomeningocoeles probably go unrecognised, due to lack of symptoms, surgeons should maintain an index of suspicion when reviewing postoperative patients. Symptomatic pseudomeningocoeles warrant intervention, as the patients do not tolerate the symptoms. However, the literature neither suggests a trial of watching and waiting nor a suitable time frame for such a trial. The authors report the spontaneous resolution of a massive symptomatic pseudomeningocoele after 11 months. There is only one previous report of a similar case, where the pseudomeningocoele disappeared in three months.