Alternate Names : Herniation syndrome, Transtentorial herniation, Uncal herniation, Subfalcine herniation, Tonsillar herniation, Herniation – brain
A brain herniation is when brain tissue, cerebrospinal fluid, and blood vessels are moved or pressed away from their usual position in the head.
Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors
A brain herniation occurs when something inside the skull produces pressure that moves brain tissues. This is most often the result of brain swelling from a head injury.
Brain herniations are the most common side effect of tumors in the brain, including:
- Metastatic brain tumor
- Primary brain tumor
A brain herniation can also be caused by:
- Strokes that cause brain swelling
A brain herniation can occur:
- Between areas inside the skull, such as those separated by a rigid membrane called the “tentorium”
- Through a natural opening at the base of the skull called the foramen magnum
- Through openings created during brain surgery
Pictures & Images
The major areas of the brain have one or more specific functions.
Brain hernia is a condition in which a portion of the brain is displaced because of increased pressure inside the skull. Increase in pressure results in progressive damage to brain tissue that may include life-threatening damage to the brainstem.
Review Date : 9/22/2008
Reviewed By : Daniel B. Hoch, PhD, MD, Assistant Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.