Pineal region tumors: an entity with crucial anatomical nuances

Jonathan Roth*, Danil A. Kozyrev, Carla Richetta, Rina Dvir, Shlomi Constantini

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Intra-axial “pineal region” tumors include pineal, tectal, and aqueductal tumors. All three tumor subgroups cause obstruction of the aqueduct; however, they differ in radiological nuances, pathology, differential diagnosis, and treatment. The goal of this manuscript is to describe the radiological, clinical, and pathological nuances that differentiate between these subgroups. Methods: All patients with intra-axial pineal region tumors were analyzed retrospectively, including demographics, radiological characteristics, pathology, treatment, and outcome. Results: Forty-nine patients (1–69 years of age) were included: 19 pineal, 10 tectal, 10 aqueductal, 4 periaqueductal, and 6 complex. The 3 main subgroups differed in various radiological and anatomical nuances. Age and gender did not differ between groups. Other factors that did not differ between groups included T1 and T2 signals, presence of blood products, a normally located (non-displaced) tectum, anterior tectal displacement, thalamic involvement, and presence of hydrocephalus. The pathological spectrum differed between the 3 main subgroups, as well as the surgical treatment, and outcome. Conclusions: Despite sharing a close anatomical location, as well as all causing obstruction of the aqueduct with secondary hydrocephalus, the differential diagnosis, diagnostic methods, and possible treatment and surgical options differ between the various subgroups. Anatomical nuances are described to better delineate the various tumor subgroups and recommend specific treatment approaches.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-390
Number of pages8
JournalChild's Nervous System
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • Aqueductal tumor
  • Endoscopy
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Pineal region
  • Pineal tumor
  • Tectal tumor


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