Brain imaging findings and social/emotional problems in Israeli children with neurofibromatosis type 1.


A potential association between brain MRI findings and social/emotional difficulties in children with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) was examined. Twenty-eight children with NF1 filled in the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ), and possible associations between their responses and findings in their brain MRI were sought. T2 bright foci were identified in MRI scans of 24 patients (85 %). There were no associations between the presence of the bright foci in any specific brain region and any of the SDQ scores for the emotional/behavioral measures. Male patients had significantly abnormal SDQ scores and peer problems. Patients with abnormal SDQ scores were younger than those with normal SDQ scores (mean 13.2 years vs 14.3 years, respectively; p = 0.23). A comparison of the scores obtained in ours and in another group of 11 children with NF1 yielded a significant difference between the groups. CONCLUSION: We believe that the lack of correlation between the MRI findings and the social/emotional parameters of the SDQ is another demonstration of the marked clinical variability characteristic of NF1.