Background: Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH), also known as pseudotumor cerebri (PTC), is a condition characterized by increased intracranial pressure without clinical, laboratory or radiologic evidence of an intracranial space-occupying lesion, meningeal inflammation or venous outflow obstruction. Previous population-based studies evaluated the presenting clinical features of IIH in North-Eastern Libya, Iowa, Louisiana, Minnesota, Northern Ireland, Israel and Western Turkey. However, we report the demographic patterns of a metropolitan North American city. Methods: We performed a retrospective study of all patients with an initial IIH diagnosis and follow-up at the Detroit Medical Center (DMC), Michigan from 1985 to 2002. Medical records of 174 patients were reviewed, with 77 patients fitting the diagnostic criteria. Results: Seventy-seven patients, 71 females (92.2%) and 6 males (7.8%) were identified. Age ranged from 10 to 50 years, with a mean of 34 years. Fifty patients (65%) were African-American and 24 patients (31%) were Caucasian. The most common presentation was isolated headache (28.6%). Nineteen patients (24.7%) were asymptomatic. Obesity was described in 65 of 74 patients (87.8%) evaluated for body dimensions. Conclusions: We report an increased number of asymptomatic patients after routine ophthalmic examination. Obese females in metropolitan Detroit would benefit from routine eye evaluations to avoid potential visual loss related to papilledema.
- Idiopathic intracranial hypertension
- North American demographics
- Pseudotumor cerebri