This study aims to determine the incidence of physiological intracranial calcifications on cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT) and to contribute to the differentiation between physiological and pathological intracranial calcifications by sharing their characteristic appearances, with the largest number of patients in the literature and many different types of physiological calcifications.
CBCT images of 996 patients admitted to the clinic between 2018-2019 were scanned retrospectively. Petroclinoid (PCL) and interclinoid ligaments (ICL), pineal gland, coronoid plexus, falx cerebri, tentorium cerebelli, and other dural calcifications were evaluated in each radiograph.
Physiological calcification was present in 49.4% of the cases, and pineal gland calcification was the most common (47.6%) type. PCL calcification was detected in 22.1%, and it was mostly bilateral partial. There were complete ICL in 1.2%, coronoid plexus in 11.3%, falx cerebri in 6.3%, tentorium cerebelli in 1.1%, and other dural calcifications in 3.6%. Only PCL calcifications differed between genders and were more common in males. PCL, pineal gland, and coronoid plexus calcifications were most detected in third decade of the cases.
Intracranial calcifications are detected incidentally in CBCT examinations. Some calcifications may indicate pathological conditions, and patients may need to be referred for further evaluation.