How Serious Is Encephalomalacia, and How Is It Treated?

Encephalomalacia is a serious condition that causes softening of tissue in the brain. It’s also known as cerebral softening or brain softening. Fortunately, cases of Encephalomalacia are somewhat rare, although the ailment can affect patients of all age groups and ethnicities. Most people will never hear about Encephalomalacia. Thousands of people do live with this condition or deal with it at some point in their lives, though. Therefore, everyone should take this ailment seriously and understand its effects.

What May Cause Encephalomalacia In Patients?

A long list of events and illnesses can lead to Encephalomalacia. Most cases of the ailment come as the result of restricted blood flow to the brain, which causes brain tissue to liquefy. Therefore, medical professionals often consider its causes similar to the causes of restricted blood flow in the brain. Bacteria, viruses, and fungi may cause an infection that leads to this condition. Something as serious as a traumatic brain injury may lead to Encephalomalacia depending on the severity of the injury.

Blockage of blood vessels to the brain and bleeding in the brain may lead to Encephalomalacia as well. Sadly, newborns and toddlers can suffer from Encephalomalacia due to twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome or asphyxia. A number of infections common in newborns can lead to Encephalomalacia, so vaccination against those potential causes is vital at a young age. Even a fetus may experience Encephalomalacia under the right circumstances, and this is an especially dire situation.

Symptoms And Side Effects of Encephalomalacia

Depending on the area of the brain affected, Encephalomalacia can cause various symptoms or side effects. Patients commonly suffer from headaches, drowsiness, and even vertigo. Some patients may feel a buildup of pressure in their heads. Plus, some patients may feel numbness or paralysis in one half of their bodies, or these effects may target a single limb or pair of limbs. Blindness, loss of speech, and even comas are possible with Encephalomalacia, so fast diagnosis is necessary for patients.

The most serious side effects of Encephalomalacia include:

* Seizures
* Paralysis
* Coma
* Death

Prognosis and Life Expectancy For Patients

An MRI or CT Scan can help doctors determine whether a patient is suffering from Encephalomalacia. Doctors will scan the brain and determine whether brain matter is missing from vital areas. Of course, missing brain matter is a common tell that Encephalomalacia is occurring. Prognosis for Encephalomalacia varies from patient to patient, but younger patients have a poorer outlook. Life expectancy varies as well based upon how well doctors can treat the underlying issues.

Treatment Options For Patients

Currently, no complete treatment or cure exists for Encephalomalacia. Doctors often remove “dead” areas of the brain where Encephalomalacia has caused softening. Doing so may allow patients to live a long and mostly healthy life if the symptoms disappear and softening stops. For now, no cure is available because it’s impossible to grow new brain cells or revive dead cells. Stem cell therapies may provide a cure for Encephalomalacia down the road, but preventative treatment is the only option now.

For the best results, early diagnosis and rapid treatment is necessary to tackle Encephalomalacia. See Encephalomalacia: Find Best Doctors and Hospitals for more information and potential solutions. In the end, Encephalomalacia is an incredibly serious condition that most people never experience. It can happen to anyone, though, and a fast response is necessary. Letting this condition worsen can quickly turn into a fatal situation.