Colloid Cysts – Things that you need to know

The removal of a skull and brain-based tumors at the skull base needs a medical professional with specialized skills that offer optimal treatment. The area is a delicate space where the glands and blood vessels reside, and the doctor and surgeon need to be experts at their job. Colloid cysts can get defined as a mucous-like mass that usually occurs at the brain center towards the lateral ventricles. Here two natural brain fluid chambers drain to the third ventricle. 

A colloid cyst can hinder the fluid flow into a person’s brain ventricle. Hence, there is a need for instant medical attention. The best way to treat this problem is through surgery. A professional surgeon can have access to the cyst using a dime-size channel through the skull base surgery. It is a minimally invasive approach that brings in various other advantages such as:

  • Very fewer complications and side effects
  • Less scarring
  • Quicker recovery times as compared to the conventional surgery

The causes of colloid cysts

The colloid cyst occurs from an abnormal folding of a primitive neuro-epithelium. It comprises old blood, mucin, various ions, and cholesterol that account for a vast pictorial appearance range. These cysts get lined by a columnar layer of epithelium that generates mucin, which appears as a fat yellow, green fluid when the cyst stays open. The slow-growing mass is considered asymptomatic. When the symptoms show, it can vary from dizziness to other fatal symptoms:

  • Visual changes
  • Memory loss
  • Vomiting
  • Sudden death
  • Confusion
  • Constant headaches
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Cognitive issues
  • Coma

The diagnosis

The initial treatment includes the medical professional carrying out a thorough check of the medical history and a physical exam. It is necessary to assess the patient’s health history and study the symptoms. To successfully diagnose and affirm that a patient has a colloid cyst, there’s a need for special imaging. 

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) –The MRI makes use of the magnetic fields for producing a well-outlined cross-sectional brain image. 
  • Computed tomography (CT) scan –The imaging process uses an X-ray camera to scan the series of in-depth cross-sectional brain images. 

Once the tests get done, the concerned doctor will have to assess the outcome and highlight the surgical process’s pros and cons. Usually, the colloid cysts are benign. Both colloid and arachnoid cysts share an embryologic originand get referred to as developmental. It is not neoplastic and cancerous, which means they don’t spread, and neither is there a need for chemotherapy or radiation therapy. However, the colloid cysts can grow in size over a while. 

However, the location of the cyst in the third ventricle is a concern. It can block the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), which is a point of concern. There are rare cases where these cysts without treatment can result in death or a sudden consciousness loss. The doctors can monitor almost all the colloid cysts t indefinitely instead of getting treated. The factors which decide whether the surgical removal or observation is ideal are usually the patient’s age, the cyst size, and the degree of the CSF blockage. 

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