Incidental Pineal Cyst on MRI Brain

Pineal cysts may be incidentally noted on MRI brain. A pineal cyst is called “incidental” if it does not produce any symptoms or signs.

In a large series of >42,000 MRI brains, incidental pineal cysts were noted in 281 (0.67%) patients. About two-thirds of them were females. The mean size of incidental pineal cyst was 10 mm. MRI brain was repeated in 181 patients after a median follow up of 6 months. There was no change in size noted in 94% of patients. No patient developed any complications due to pineal cysts on follow up. (Ref: World Neurosurgery, 2016).

Our patient was a 45-year old man, in whom MRI brain was done for evaluation of headache. An incidental pineal cyst 9 mm in size was noted. He was advised to return for follow up after 6-12 months.


  1. Incidental pineal cysts on MRI brain is not uncommon and can be seen in 7 out of 1000 MRIs.
  2. Incidental pineal cysts are about 10 mm in size and do not produce any symptoms.
  3. Incidental pineal cysts follow a benign course and majority of them do not change in size over time.
  4. Patients with incidental pineal cysts on MRI brain may be followed up for one year and if the size does not increase for a year, they can be discharged from routine follow-up and surveillance.

Published by Dr Sudhir Kumar MD (Medicine) DM (Neurology)

I am a doctor with 25 years experience. I have worked as a neurologist for about 20 years. Educating public and healthcare professionals is very dear to me. This is possible due to my interactions with thousands of patients and their caregivers. I salute the patients who suffer and it is our duty to minimise suffering by preventing diseases and ensuring prompt diagnosis and treatment of those already affected.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Create your website with
Get started
%d bloggers like this: