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Brain Swelling

Last Updated: September 27, 2018

Figure 1:  Subtemporal decompression was the safestest method of dealing with tumors and relieving intracranial tension during infancy of neurosurgery (1907-1917).  In the absence of localizing signs by the tumor, subtemporal decompression relieved life-threatening tension until more localizing signs developed, allowing more aggressive resection as neurosurgical techniques advanced. In this image, Cushing demonstrates the autopsy specimen of this patient suffering from a glioma, causing brain swelling and cerebral herniation through the craniectomy defect (inset)(Courtesy of the Cushing Brain Tumor Registry at Yale University).

Primary cerebral edema may be classified as osmotic, hydrocephalic, vasogenic, cytotoxic, and hydrostatic. Brain swelling can also be included in these classific...