Anomalies of the head and neck are uncommon and often difficult to characterize by ultrasound because of obscuration by ossified portions of the skull and face, fetal lie and various maternal factors. MRI is becoming an important tool to more accurately characterize these abnormalities for diagnosis and guide management.
Educational Goals / Teaching Points
Review fetal MRI imaging techniques. Review and discuss the common developmental and neoplastic masses of the fetal head (cranial and extra cranial), face and neck. Illustrate various lesions of the fetal head and neck with MRI. Correlate with fetal MRI with US and postnatal imaging. Outline diagnostic criteria and differential diagnoses for various lesions of the head and neck.
Key Anatomic/Physiologic Issues and Imaging Findings/Techniques
Diagnosis will focus on importance of anatomic and embryological features.
Fetal MRI is a very important tool in the diagnosis and management of head and neck masses. An understanding of fetal head and neck masses will be helpful for general, obstetric, neuro and pediatric radiologists.