Diagnosis and treatment of Chiari malformation type 1 in children: the International Consensus Document

International Experts - Jury of the Chiari & Syringomyelia Consensus Conference, “Milan, November 11–13, 2019”

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Background: Chiari malformation type 1 (CM1) is a rare condition where agreed classification and treatment are still missing. The goal of this study is to achieve a consensus on the diagnosis and treatment of CM1 in children. Methods: A multidisciplinary panel formulated 57 provisional statements based on a review of the literature. Thirty-four international experts (IE) participated in a Delphi study by independently rating each statement on a 4-point Likert scale (“strongly disagree,” “disagree,” “agree,” “strongly agree”). Statements that were endorsed (“agree” or “strongly agree”) by < 75% of raters were re-formulated, or new statements were added, and another Delphi round followed (up to a maximum of three). Results: Thirty-five IE were contacted and 34 agreed to participate. A consensus was reached on 30/57 statements (52.6%) after round 1. Three statements were added, and one removed. After round 2, agreement was reached on 56/59 statements (94.9%). Finally, after round 3, which took place during the 2019 Chiari Consensus Conference (Milan, Italy), agreement was reached on 58/59 statements (98.3%) about four main sections (Definition and Classification, Planning, Surgery, Isolated Syringomyelia). Only one statement did not gain a consensus, which is the “definition of radiological failure 24 month post-surgery.” Conclusions: The consensus document consists of 58 statements (24 on diagnosis, 34 on treatment), serving clinicians and researchers following children with CM1. There is a clear need for establishing an international network and registry and to promote collaborative studies to increase the evidence base and optimize the long-term care of this patient population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1311-1326
Number of pages16
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2022


  • Chiari 1 malformation
  • Children
  • Consensus
  • Craniovertebral decompression
  • Management
  • Syringomyelia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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