Often, a brain lesion has a characteristic appearance that will help your doctor determine its cause. Sometimes the cause of the abnormal-appearing area cannot be diagnosed by the image alone, and additional or follow-up tests may be necessary.
Among the known possible causes of brain lesions are:
- Brain aneurysm (a bulge in an artery in your brain)
- Brain AVM (arteriovenous malformation) — an abnormal formation of brain blood vessels
- Brain tumor (both cancerous and noncancerous)
- Encephalitis (brain inflammation)
- Hydrocephalus (a congenital brain abnormality)
- Multiple sclerosis
- Traumatic brain injury
While brain trauma of any sort may result in a concussion as well as a brain lesion, concussions and brain lesions are not the same thing. Concussions more often occur without ever causing any changes on the CT or MRI and are diagnosed by symptoms rather than imaging tests.
Jan. 11, 2018
Causes shown here are commonly associated with this symptom. Work with your doctor or other health care professional for an accurate diagnosis.
- Sandeman EM, et al. Incidental findings on brain MR imaging in older community-dwelling subjects are common but serious medical consequences are rare: A cohort study. PLOS One. 2013;8:e71467.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). National Multiple Sclerosis Society. http://www.nationalmssociety.org/Symptoms-Diagnosis/Diagnosing-Tools/MRI. Accessed Aug. 14, 2017.
- Maher CO, et al. Incidental findings on brain and spine imaging in children Pediatrics. 2015;135:e1084.
- Cole AJ. Magnetic resonance imaging changes related to acute seizure activity. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed Aug. 14, 2017.
- Sports-related concussion. Merck Manual Professional Version http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/injuries-poisoning/traumatic-brain-injury-tbi/sports-related-concussion. Accessed Aug. 14, 2017.