Purpose: Miliary enhancement refers to the presence of multiple small, monomorphic, enhancing foci on T1-weighted post-contrast MRI images. In the absence of a clear clinical presentation, a broad differential diagnosis may result in invasive procedures and possibly brain biopsy for diagnostic purposes. Methods: An extensive review of the literature is provided for diseases that may present with miliary enhancement on T1-weighted brain MR images. Additional disease-specific findings, both clinical and radiological, are summarized and categorized by the presence or absence of perivascular space involvement. Results: Miliary pattern of enhancement may be due to a variety of underlying causes, including inflammatory, infectious, nutritional or neoplastic processes. The recognition of disease spread along the perivascular spaces in addition to the detection or exclusion of disease-specific features on MRI images, such as leptomeningeal enhancement, presence of haemorrhagic lesions, spinal cord involvement and specific localisation or systemic involvement, allows to narrow the potential differential diagnoses. Conclusion: A systematic approach to disease-specific findings from both clinical and radiological perspectives might facilitate diagnostic work-up, and recognition of disease spread along the perivascular spaces may help narrowing down differential diagnoses and may help to minimize the use of invasive diagnostic procedures.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages18
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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