ICNC Abstracts, ICNC 2018

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Assessment of the association between pediatric Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension and olfactory function
Maya Muhlbauer Avni, Naama Yosha-Orpaz, Osnat Konen, Nitza Goldenberg-Cohen, Rachel Straussberg

Last modified: 2018-09-09


  • Introduction: Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) has variety of clinical manifestations. Recent studies have shown that olfactory function is impaired in adults suffering from IIH. The presumable mechanism is damage to the peripheral structures of the olfactory system derived from the raised intracranial pressure.
  • Objective: to assess the association between pediatric IIH and olfactory performance.
  • Methods: A cross-sectional comparative study design was used. We enrolled 17 patients aged less than 18 years diagnosed with IIH according to the revised diagnostic criteria and equal number of healthy age- and sex-matched subjects as controls.  Children with other conditions that might impair olfaction were excluded. Olfactory function was evaluated using the Sniffin' Sticks, a reliable and simple semi-objective chemosensory nasal performance test. The odor threshold (OT) and Odor identification (OI) scores (0-16) of the groups were compared. The OT is considered more sensitive to peripheral olfactory function whereas OI reflects higher cognitive levels of olfactory processing. Additionally, subjects' demographic and clinical data were collected.
  • Results: Patients with IIH had significantly lower mean OT scores than the healthy controls (IIH subjects 6.36±3.50 versus controls 10.21±2.79, p=0.004). There was no significant difference between the OI scores (IIH subjects 9.82±1.63 versus controls 10.59±1.84, p=0.290). We found no association between the OT scores of children with IIH and their LPOP values, sex, age or BMI.
  • discussion: This study provides new evidence of olfactory dysfunction in pediatric IIH. We found a selective deficit in olfactory detection threshold sensitivity which may imply a reduction of peripheral olfactory perceptual ability.


Idiopathic intracranial Hypertension, IIH, olfactory impairment, sniffin' sticks

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