There are significant advances in immune-modulating treatments for Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) and chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) in the past 20 years. GBS, however, is still a serious disease with a mortality rate of 8% and 20% of the patients being unable to walk independently a year after onset. For CIDP and related disorders such as multifocal motor neuropathy, and demyeinating neuropathy with anti-myelin-associated-glycoprotein (MAG) antibody, treatments should be based on individual pathophysiology. Rituximab could be a promising agent for the subtypes of CIDP refractory to conventional immune treatments. Crow-Fukase syndrome is a rare cause of demyelinating neuropathy with multiorgan involvement. Overproduction of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), probably mediated by monoclonal proliferation of plasma cells, is likely to be responsible for most of the characteristic symptoms. There is no established treatment regimen for Crow-Fukase syndrome. In appropriate candidates, high-dose chemotherapies with autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation is highly recommended, because this treatment could result in obvious improvement in neuropathy as well as other symptoms. Indication of this treatment has not yet been established, and long-term prognosis is unclear at present. Treatments that should be considered as future therapy against Crow-Fukase syndrome include thalidomide, and anti-VEGF monoclonal antibody (bevacizumab).
Purpose: We evaluated whether pre- and post-stroke statin use was associated with intracranial hemorrhage (ICH) and clinical outcome at 3 months after intravenous recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (IV rt-PA) for acute ischemic stroke. Methods: This study enrolled 600 consecutive patients (72±12 years, woman 37.2%) who received IV rt-PA at ten stroke centers that participated in the SAMURAI rt-PA Registry from October 2005 to July 2008. Results: Statins were used prior to stroke in 11.2% and within 72 h after IV rt-PA in 10.0% of patients. One hundred nineteen patients (19.8%) developed ICH. Pre-stroke statin use was not an independent factor associated with ICH (OR 1.46; 95%CI 0.76-2.81, p=0.225). Of 535 patients with a premorbid mRS≤1, 199 (37.2%) had a favorable clinical outcome at 3 months (mRS≤1). Pre-stroke statin use (OR 1.05; 95%CI 0.55-2.01, p=0.879), as well as post-stroke statin use (OR 1.31; 95%CI 0.66-2.59, p=0.440), was not an independent predictor of outcome. Conclusions: In patients who received IV rt-PA for acute ischemic stroke, statin use did not increase ICH after thrombolysis, nor was it associated with clinical outcome.
A 64-year-old woman was referred to our hospital because of disturbance of consciousness. She had undergone distal gastrectomy for gastric carcinoma 17 years previously. General physical examination was unremarkable, neurologic examination disclosed hyperactive deep tendon reflexes in the upper limbs. Laboratory abnormalities included elevations of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), and findings suggesting disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). Lumbar cerebrospinal fluid showed a protein concentration of 408mg/dl and a glucose concentration of 82mg/dl (blood: 110mg/dl), as well as a cell count of 16/mm3. Cranial computed tomography indicated brain edema. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain showed diffuse thickening of the dura mater, with contrast enhancement upon gadolinium-DTPA administration. These findings suggested hypertrophic pachymeningitis. Magnetic resonance venography (MRV) showed occlusion of the left transverse sinus and attenuation of the straight sinus. MRI of the spine as well as gallium scintigrams demonstrated multiple areas of increased uptake in areas near the skull and spine. We therefore suspected tumor metastasis. The patient was given heparin as well as pulse therapy with methylprednisolone, but she died 7 weeks after symptom onset. At postmortem examination, the dura was thickened. Histopathologically, numerous tumor cell emboli in the dura were confined to the lumens of veins. The tumor cells were thought to have metastasized to the dura through the vertebral venous plexus (Batson's plexus). Immunostaining demonstrated immunoreactivity of tumor cells to epithelial membrane antigen (EMA) and carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA). The primary origin of the carcinoma was not precisely identified by these findings. Widespread dural vein tumor emboli should be taken into consideration as a cause in cases that develop rapid deterioration of consciousness associated dura mater thickening.
We report a 51-year-old man with human T lymphotropic virus type-1 (HTLV-1) associated myelopathy (HAM) manifested 10 months after renal transplantation. He had progressive spastic paralysis and neurogenic bladder for 10 years. HTLV-1 antibody are positive both serum and cerebral spinal fluid (CSF). Althoght HTLV-1 was not examined in the donor, it was suspected that the patient was infected by renal transplantation. After treatment of interferon-α (IFN-α), his motor function had improved and neopterin in CSF was decreased from 158pmol/ml to 89pmol/ml. This is a rare case of HAM after living renal transplantation. Cyclosporin and methylpredonisolone are used as immunosuppressants for preventing graft rejection. Time for developing HAM after renal transplantation was shorter than patients after cadaveric renal transplantation. More investigations are needed to clarify the mechanisms in the development of HAM associated with renal transplantation.
A 72-year-old woman referred to our hospital because of slowly progressive (over 2 years) muscle weakness and paresthesias of the lower limbs. On neurological examination, weakness and muscle atrophies were noted in the distal upper limbs as well as the proximal lower limbs. She had also paresthesias of the legs. The level of creatinine phosphokinase (CK) was 126IU/l. The magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated gadolinium enhancement of the nerve roots at the L4-S2 vertebrate levels. Nerve conduction study showed decreased compound muscle action potential and motor conduction velocity of tibial and peroneal nerves. Biopsy of the left biceps brachii muscle showed variations in fiber size, endomysial mononuclear cell infiltration and the findings like a rimmed vacuole. Although almost of her findings were in accord with clinical features of inclusion body myositis, strong inflammatory cellular influences allowed us to administer corticosteroid therapy. Because her weakness was well responded to steroid therapy, polymyositis was considered as differential diagnosis. Then, further examinations were investigated to search any occult neoplasm, and detected the early gastric cancer. Total gastrectomy was performed later, and the pathological diagnosis was made as a signet-ring cell carcinoma. To our knowledge, this is the first report of systemic myositis and subacute sensory neuropathy concomitant with signet-ring cell carcinoma. These symptoms might be occurred as a result of paraneoplastic syndrome associated with satellite effects of the signet-ring cell carcinoma.
We report a 60-year-old woman with toxoplasma encephalopathy. She was being treated with prednisolone and methotrexate for rheumatoid arthritis that was diagnosed at the age of 40. In a preoperative examination of her left fifth finger ganglion, pericardial effusions, cardiomegaly, and a right atrial mass were detected. In addition, brain MRI showed nodular shadows in the right thalamus, bilateral globus pallidus, and left dentate nucleus of the cerebellum. T1 and T2 weighted images showed high intensities within those shadows; however, a T1 gadolinium enhancement image showed no contrast enhancement in the lesions. There were no positive neurological findings. Examination of the cerebrospinal fluid and cultivation tests showed nothing particular. The right atrial mass was subsequently diagnosed as malignant lymphoma and treated with radiation therapy. Toxoplasma gondii antibody titers were increased in both serum and cerebrospinal fluid. Based on IgG avidity index and nested PCR, we diagnosed toxoplasma encephalopathy with chronic T. gondii infection. The T. gondii gene product was also detected in cerebrospinal fluid by nested PCR. We consider that IgG avidity index and nested PCR were useful for the diagnosis of toxoplasma encephalopathy.
A 35-year-old Japanese man was admitted to our hospital with recurrent meningoencephalitis of unknown etiology. He presented with fever, convulsions and loss of consciousness, which started at age 33. We diagnosed him with neuro-Sweet disease (NSD) based on human leukocyte antigen (HLA) B-54/Cw1 positivity and neutrophilic infiltration into the dermis in a biopsied skin plaque. Intravenous methylprednisolone and oral prednisolone markedly improved his fever and CSF pleocytosis. Five years later he was again admitted to our hospital with high fever, oral aphthae and dull-red edematous plaques on the face and body. He was conscious, but he had neck stiffness, mild hyperreflexia in all limbs and an extensor plantar response. Laboratory tests revealed increased white blood cell, erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and C-reactive protein level. CSF analysis indicated mild pleocytosis. A skin biopsy from an edematous plaque revealed neurotrophils infiltlating the upper dermis. We treated him with intravenous methylprednisolone (1g/day) for 3 days, followed by oral prednisolone (50mg/day). His symptoms improved remarkably; however, he had recurrence of symptoms, such as fever, meningial irritation and oral aphtae, with attempted taper of prednisolone. We started treatment with dapsone (75mg/day) in addition to prednisolone, and could taper oral prednisolone, without a relapse. However, because some mildly recurred with the tapering of dapson, we maintained dapsone treatment at 75mg daily, added colchicine (1mg/day) and tapered only prednisolone. His symptoms were improved and no relapse has been observed. NSD is characterized by neurotrophic hyperactivation and infiltration of tissues. It is highly responsive to systemic corticosteroid therapy; however, some cases show frequent recurrences on tapering of corticosteroids. Dapsone is considered to prevent neurotrophic overactivity. In this case, dapsone was supposed to be effective to prevent reccurence of NSD upon tappering corticosteroids. Dapsone should be a therapeutic options for steroid-dependent NSD showing frequent recurrence.
A 51-year-old man with no underlying disease was referred to our hospital, complaining of mild headache. In May 2004 he developed headache of sudden onset in the occipital region and neck pain. He visited our hospital the following morning. At the first visit, there was no fever and only an analgesic was prescribed. The headache alleviated, with only occasional mild episodes thereafter. However, 2 days later, the headache aggravated again, associated this time with elevated body temperature (38°C). The patient visited our hospital and a lumbar puncture was performed; examination of the cerebrospinal fluid revealed marked elevation of the cell count (mononuclear cell-dominant). The patient was admitted to the hospital and started on treatment with cefotaxime and acyclovir. However, the symptoms persisted and 10 days later, the cerebrospinal fluid culture yielded a growth of Campylobacter jejuni (C. jejuni). The antibiotic was therefore changed to panipenem, which resulted in prompt resolution of the symptoms. To the best of our knowledge, meningitis caused by C. jejuni in an immunocompetent adult is extremely rare. This case highlights the importance of bearing in mind the possibility of C. jejuni meningitis in a patient of meningitis associated with mononuclear cell-dominant pleocytosis of the cerebrospinal fluid.
We report the case of a 30-year-old man who developed severe dysphagia owing to neuroborreliosis. He showed dysphagia, diplopia, hiccups, and walking difficulty Neurological examination revealed mild disturbance of consciousness, diplopia on left lateral gaze, left-side-dominant blephaloptosis, gaze-evoked horizontal nystagmus on left lateral gaze, mild bilateral muscle weakness, palatoplegia, dysphagia, dysarthria, and truncal ataxia. An increased pharyngeal reflex caused dysphagia in this patient. An EEG revealed intermittent high amplitude slow wave activity. However, head MRI, blood count, serum chemistry, and cerebrospinal fluid examination showed no abnormality. Initially, brainstem encephalitis with unknown etiology was diagnosed. The hiccups, diplopia, and ptosis were improved by corticosteroid therapy, but other symptoms were refractory to corticosteroid therapy and IVIg. After these immunotherapies, anti-Borrelia IgG and IgM antibodies were found to be positive, and symptoms, including dysphagia, were improved by doxycycline and cefotaxime. Because the clinical symptoms of Borrelia infection are widely variable, neuroborreliosis should be considered in patients with brainstem encephalitis refractory to conventional immunotherapies.