Association Between Klippel-Trenaunay Syndrome and Spontaneous Intracranial Hypotension: A Report of 4 Patients

Ajay A. Madhavan, Dong Kun Kim, Carrie M. Carr, Patrick H. Luetmer, Tristan N. Covington, Jeremy K. Cutsforth-Gregory, Waleed Brinjikji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background: Klippel-Trenaunay syndrome (KTS) is associated with a wide variety of vascular and neurologic abnormalities, including venolymphatic malformations. A recent report postulated that patients with KTS may also be predisposed to spontaneous intracranial hypotension. We reviewed brain magnetic resonance imaging from 67 patients with KTS and unexpectedly noted findings of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) hypotension in 4 of them. Case Description: Patients included a 39-year-old woman with episodic orthostatic headaches, a 62-year-old woman with orthostatic headaches and light-headedness, a 14-year-old girl with a history of headaches for years, and an asymptomatic 20-year-old man. All 4 patients had known KTS, and all had brain magnetic resonance imaging done during their evaluation showing evidence of CSF hypotension. The first 2 patients also had spine imaging demonstrating paraspinal and/or epidural venolymphatic malformations. The second patient had a meningeal diverticulum and underwent surgical repair with intraoperative evidence of a CSF leak. Conclusions: Patients with KTS have an increased incidence of CSF hypotension. While it is possible that intrinsic dural weakness may be responsible for this association, we hypothesize that these patients are also predisposed to developing CSF venous fistulas. Paraspinal and epidural venolymphatic malformations have been described in multiple patients with CSF venous fistulas. Such malformations were present in 2 of our 4 patients who underwent spine imaging. Patients with KTS with orthostatic headaches may benefit from brain and spine magnetic resonance imaging to assess for evidence of CSF hypotension and venolymphatic malformations. Decubitus digital subtraction myelography may also have a role in these patients if CSF venous fistulas are suspected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)398-403
Number of pages6
JournalWorld neurosurgery
StatePublished - Jun 2020


  • CSF venous fistula
  • Digital subtraction myelography
  • Intracranial hypotension
  • Klippel-Trenaunay syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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