Aqueductal stenosis and hydrocephalus in an infant due to aspergillus infection

van Landeghem FK, Stiller B, Lehmann TN, Sarioglu N, Sander B, Lange PE, Stoltenburg-Didinger G.

Institute of Neuropathology, Humboldt-Universitat, Berlin, Germany.

Aqueductal stenosis is a common cause of hydrocephalus during infancy. We report on an infant born with aplasia cutis congenita at the scalp vertex and hypoplastic left heart syndrome developing systemic aspergillosis after cardiac surgery. The infant died at the age of 76 days despite systemic antimycotic therapy with a combination of flucytosine and amphotericin B. Therapy started at post-operative day 17 and was also applied intrathecally. Post-mortem examination revealed meningitis, multiple brain aspergillomas and microabscesses with focal ependymitis, focal bronchopneumonia, and necrotizing enterocolitis. One of the brain aspergillomas was located close to the aqueduct causing an aqueductal stenosis and an obstructive hydrocephalus. Histologically, aspergillus hyphae could only be detected in the aspergilloma of the aqueduct. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first reported case of an aqueductal stenosis caused by an aspergilloma.