Hypothalamus


The hypothalamus is the location of many specific lesions as well as hosting more traditional lesions. (a relatively comprehensive list is located here). Its anatomy is to many of us somewhat mysterious.

As the name would suggest, below the thalamus, and is intimately associated with both the limbic system and the pituitary gland.

Boundaries

Its boundaries are in some places poorly defined (outlined in blue in this figure)

Anterior: Lamina terminalis, with optic chiasm at its lower border and anterior commissure above.
Superior: an imaginary line drawn between the anterior and posterior commissures.
Posterior: an imaginary line sloping antero-inferiorly from the posterior commissure to the mamillary bodies.
Inferior (floor): infundibular stalk, tuber cinereum and mamillary bodies (from front to back)

For more details about fiber tracts and nuclei please visit the brand new Radiopaedia.org here.

References:
1. SN Saleem et al “Lesions of the Hypothalamus: MR Imaging Diagnostic Features” RadioGraphics 2007;27:1087-1108
2. HJ Kretschmann and W Weinrich “Cranial neuroimaging and clinical neuroanatomy” 3rd edition Thieme
3. RajMohan V, Mohandas E. The limbic system. Indian J Psychiatry 2007;49:132-9

Credit: Dr Frank Gaillard