Imaging features of neurotoxoplasmosis: A multiparametric approach, with emphasis on susceptibility-weighted imaging

John C. Benson, Gustavo Cervantes, Thomas R. Baron, Andrew E. Tyan, Siobhan Flanagan, Leandro T. Lucato, Alexander M. McKinney, Frederick Ott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Neurotoxoplasmosis is a common opportunistic infection in HIV/AIDS patients. Imaging identification of neurotoxoplasmosis assists in timely treatment. Purpose: To delineate the frequency of imaging abnormalities in patients with neurotoxoplasmosis on different MR sequences with a particular focus on SWI, and NCCT. Material and methods: The PACS database was retroactively searched over a 5-year period for patients with neurotoxoplasmosis who underwent MRI with SWI. Included patients had imaging features of neurotoxoplasmosis based on consensus review by two neuroradiologists, a clinical diagnosis of neurotoxoplasmosis at the time of MRI, and diagnostic confirmation based on positive serum or CSF serology or histopathology; 15 patients were included. The number of abnormal foci with restricted diffusion, increased FLAIR signal, intrinsic T1 hyperintensity, abnormal enhancement (CE-T1WI), and intrinsic hyperdensity on CT were recorded. Results: Intralesional susceptibility signal (ISS) foci on SWI were observed in 93.3% of patients with neurotoxoplasmosis (mean size 5.2 ± 3.8 mm). The average number of ISS foci was 3.9 per patient; 3/15 (20.0%) had a single ISS. Amongst other MR sequences, hyperintense FLAIR foci were the most common abnormalities observed (12.4 lesions/patient), followed by enhancing foci (8.2 lesions/patient), foci of restricted diffusion (7.1 lesions/patient), and intrinsic T1 hyperintense foci (3.4 lesions/patient). Abnormalities were least frequently observed on NCCT: abnormalities were identified in 5/15 (33.3%) patients, at a rate of 0.4 lesions/patient. Conclusion: ISS foci are present in the vast majority of neurotoxoplasmosis patients, likely representing hemorrhage. The incidence and frequency of other abnormal foci are highest on FLAIR, and lowest on NCCT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-51
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Radiology Open
StatePublished - 2018


  • AIDS
  • HIV
  • Toxoplasmosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Imaging features of neurotoxoplasmosis: A multiparametric approach, with emphasis on susceptibility-weighted imaging'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this