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July 1984

Benign Intracranial Hypertension and Facial Diplegia

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Neurosurgery (Dr Kiwak) and the Departments of Medicine and Neurology (Dr Levine), UCLA Center for the Health Sciences. Dr Kiwak is now at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston.

Arch Neurol. 1984;41(7):787-788. doi:10.1001/archneur.1984.04050180113031

• Benign intracranial hypertension (BIH) may occasionally be associated with false localizing cranial nerve palsies. Abducens nerve palsies reportedly occur in 10% to 60% of patients with BIH, whereas other cranial nerve palsies occur much less frequently. We treated a woman with benign intracranial hypertension and facial diplegia who showed complete resolution of her cranial nerve palsies after control of her elevated intracranial pressure with a lumboperitoneal shunt. The pathophysiologic course of cranial nerve palsies in patients with BIH is uncertain but in most cases probably represents a nonspecific pressure-related phenomenon, as was clearly demonstrated in this patient. The clinical association of BIH and facial diplegia has not, to our knowledge, been reported previously.

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