Encephaloceles, a rare medical condition derived from Greek words meaning "brain hernia," involve the protrusion of brain tissue, cerebrospinal fluid, or membranes through a defect in the skull. These anomalies often present at birth and can occur in various locations on the skull. Recent research has shed light on the possible causes of encephaloceles, including genetic factors such as the Sonic Hedgehog pathway and inadequate folic acid intake during pregnancy. Folic acid is essential for proper neural tube closure during fetal development, making it a key preventive measure.
Emerging treatments for encephaloceles show promise, with a focus on mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in animal models. These experiments have demonstrated improved lesion closure, reduced apoptosis, enhanced sensory neuron differentiation, and better motor function. However, further research is needed for clinical application and optimization.
Advancements in managing craniofacial encephaloceles are also discussed, highlighting less invasive surgical approaches and treatment options for drug-resistant temporal seizures caused by these anomalies. The evolving landscape of encephalocele care emphasizes the importance of tailored treatments based on the location and characteristics of the defect.
In summary, recent research has enhanced our understanding of encephaloceles, emphasizing the significance of folic acid intake in prevention and introducing potential breakthrough treatments involving stem cell therapy. These developments offer hope for improved patient outcomes and a brighter future in managing this rare condition.
Bautista, Amanda N.
"Encephaloceles: A Comprehensive Exploration Of Research, Causes, Prevention, and Innovative Approaches to Diagnosis and Treatment,"
Mako: NSU Undergraduate Student Journal: Vol. 2024, Article 1.
Available at: https://nsuworks.nova.edu/mako/vol2024/iss1/1