Chronic stress and major depression cause cerebral volume loss, according to Yale University. Other causes of cerebral atrophy include stroke-related brain injury, brain infections, and neurological diseases such as Huntington's disease, cerebral palsy, or Alzheimer’s disease, according to Healthgrades. Symptoms differ based on the cause and location of volume loss.
Patients who experience cerebral volume loss show symptoms of cognitive and emotional impairment, notes Yale University. A genetic switch called a transcription factor can prevent connections of synapses between brain cells, triggering a loss of brain mass in the prefrontal cortex.
Cerebral atrophy is the shrinking of the brain due to slow or rapid deterioration of brain cells, explains Healthgrades. Symptoms of cerebral atrophy include loss of motor control, seizures, and problems with reading, speaking and comprehending.