Skip to main content

BrainView: a software designed for quantifying brain volume, weight and density


Because radiological densities are linearly correlated with the physical densities in human tissue, the use of CT gives the opportunity to measure in vivo the volume, weight and density of the brain. BrainView is a software specially designed to compute these parameters.


DICOM images obtained from the cerebral CT (high-speed advantage CT scan; GE medical system, USA) performed for headache assessment in 10 patients (43 ± 18 years, mean ± SD) were analyzed. Each exam, acquired as 5-mm-thickness contiguous slices, was considered as normal by the neuro-radiologist (AZ). As a first step, BrainView automatically excluded extracranial compartments on each CT section by means of a mathematical morphology-based algorithm. One single physician (TL) then delineated on each section the two hemispheres, the cerebellum, the brainstem and the intraventricular and subarach-noid cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) according to anatomical landmarks. The volume of each anatomical compartment was computed as the number of voxels included in this compartment times the volume of the voxel. The weight of each voxel was computed as its volume times its density knowing that the physical density of a voxel having a radiological density of 0 HU (i.e. water) is 1 g/ml. The weight of each compartment was computed by summing the weights of all voxels composing it.


See Table 1.

Table 1 Volume, weight and physical density of each compartment (mean ± SD)


BrainView is a tool providing the measurements in vivo of volume, weight and density of the human brain. It gives new opportunities to assess the global and regional effects of anti-edematous treatment as well as the permeability of the brain-blood barrier in patients with intracranial hypertension.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Lescot, T., Fetita, C., Zouaoui, A. et al. BrainView: a software designed for quantifying brain volume, weight and density. Crit Care 7 (Suppl 2), P090 (2003).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • DOI:


  • Human Tissue
  • Regional Effect
  • Anatomical Landmark
  • Brain Volume
  • Intracranial Hypertension