13 doctors weighed in:

We just found that my wife, age 58, has a "golf ball" sized arachnoid cyst in her left frontal area. Could this create personality changes?

13 doctors weighed in
Dr. Tung Nguyen
Neurosurgery
4 doctors agree

In brief: Unlikely

A cyst this size, in this location, is most likely congenital, and has been present for a long time.
Unless there has been a significant change in size in a short time, it typically does not cause symptoms.

In brief: Unlikely

A cyst this size, in this location, is most likely congenital, and has been present for a long time.
Unless there has been a significant change in size in a short time, it typically does not cause symptoms.
Dr. Tung Nguyen
Dr. Tung Nguyen
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Dr. Pavel Conovalciuc
Family Medicine
4 doctors agree

In brief: Possible

Yes, it is possible if there is significant involvement of the cortex (grey matter) of certain brain lobes (frontal, temporal, for example).

In brief: Possible

Yes, it is possible if there is significant involvement of the cortex (grey matter) of certain brain lobes (frontal, temporal, for example).
Dr. Pavel Conovalciuc
Dr. Pavel Conovalciuc
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Dr. Eric Trumble
Neurosurgery
3 doctors agree

In brief: Yes

Frontal lobe pathology commonly presents with head-aches and personality changes.
Arachnoid cysts are an uncommon cause of frontal lobe pathology at your wife's age, but certainly possible. At a minimum, she needs a head MRI with and without contrast, neurosurgical evaluation and, if surgery is not felt to be appropriate, a repeat MRI in 6-12 months to confirm stability would be appropriate.

In brief: Yes

Frontal lobe pathology commonly presents with head-aches and personality changes.
Arachnoid cysts are an uncommon cause of frontal lobe pathology at your wife's age, but certainly possible. At a minimum, she needs a head MRI with and without contrast, neurosurgical evaluation and, if surgery is not felt to be appropriate, a repeat MRI in 6-12 months to confirm stability would be appropriate.
Dr. Eric Trumble
Dr. Eric Trumble
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Dr. Paul Schwartz
Psychiatry
2 doctors agree

In brief: Yes

Any space-occupying lesion of that size impinging upon the frontal lobes could affect behavior in any number of ways.

In brief: Yes

Any space-occupying lesion of that size impinging upon the frontal lobes could affect behavior in any number of ways.
Dr. Paul Schwartz
Dr. Paul Schwartz
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Dr. Alan Jacobs
Neurology
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Yes

There is a famous case of a man who threw his wife out the window of their building and his pet scan showed clinical effects of an arachnoid cyst pressing on her right (?) orbital frontal and anterior temporal lobes.
He got his sentence greatly reduced because of the neurobehavioral effects of the cyst. Does your wife have personify changes?

In brief: Yes

There is a famous case of a man who threw his wife out the window of their building and his pet scan showed clinical effects of an arachnoid cyst pressing on her right (?) orbital frontal and anterior temporal lobes.
He got his sentence greatly reduced because of the neurobehavioral effects of the cyst. Does your wife have personify changes?
Dr. Alan Jacobs
Dr. Alan Jacobs
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