Neuroimaging: Applications in disorders of early brain development

Alexander H. Hoon, Elias R. Melhem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Neuroimaging techniques have established new connections between etiological factors and disorders of early brain development. Neuroimaging has also strengthened the link between patterns of selective vulnerability in the developing brain and clinical syndromes, especially cerebral palsy. Both computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) identify early developmental malformations, including neural tube defects, callosal dysgenesis, neuronal migration disorders, posterior fossa malformations, and hydrocephalus. Periventricular white matter damage, most commonly seen in premature infants, is best visualized by cranial ultrasonography in the neonatal period and on MRI later in childhood. In term infants and children with genetic metabolic diseases, various applications of nuclear magnetic resonance, including MRI, have important diagnostic roles. The utility of diffusion-weighted imaging, MR spectroscopy, and functional MRI to further understanding of brain injury, biochemistry, and function is under active investigation. In summary, selecting the appropriate neuroimaging technique can improve diagnosis and management of childhood neurodevelopmental disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-302
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2000


  • Cerebral palsy
  • Diffusion weighted imaging
  • Functional magnetic resonance imaging
  • Magnetic resonance
  • Magnetic resonance spectroscopy
  • Nuclear magnetic resonance
  • Periventricular hemorrhagic infarction
  • Periventricular leukomalacia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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