Internal Medicine
Online ISSN : 1349-7235
Print ISSN : 0918-2918
ISSN-L : 0918-2918
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EDITORIALS
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
  • Tsuyoshi Ishikawa, Ryo Sasaki, Tatsuro Nishimura, Takashi Matsuda, Tak ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1331-1342
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    Objective This study primarily aimed to investigate the short-term effects of partial splenic embolization (PSE) on the Child-Pugh score and identify predictive factors for changes in the score caused by PSE. The secondary aim was to analyze changes in various parameters at one month postoperatively using these identified factors.

    Methods Between September 2007 and December 2019, 118 patients with cirrhosis and hypersplenism underwent PSE at our hospital. Testing was conducted preoperatively and at one month after PSE.

    Results Overall, the Child-Pugh score was not significantly changed postoperatively. The Child-Pugh score before PSE was identified as the strongest independent predictor of ameliorated and deteriorated Child-Pugh scores after PSE. Higher pretreatment Child-Pugh scores were correlated with higher posttreatment amelioration rates of the score. A significant decrease in the portal vein diameter and a significant increase in the common hepatic artery diameter were evident at the same level postoperatively in 64 patients with Child-Pugh class A (group A) and in 54 patients with Child-Pugh class B or C (group B/C) preoperatively. According to Murray's Law, PSE resulted in decreased portal venous flow and increased hepatic arterial flow, suggesting a hepatic arterial buffer response (HABR) induced by the procedure. Despite equivalent splenic infarction rates and similar posttreatment changes in hepatic hemodynamics, PSE significantly increased the Child-Pugh score of group A; however, the procedure significantly decreased the score of group B/C.

    Conclusion Considering original portal venous-hepatic arterial hemodynamics, PSE is expected to produce HABR-mediated hepatic functional improvements in cirrhosis patients with Child-Pugh class B/C.

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  • Masaaki Shimada, Noboru Hirashima, Hiroaki Iwase, Masashi Saito, Hisas ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1343-1348
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    Objective We investigated the muscle cramp status of patients with liver cirrhosis by focusing on the degree of liver damage, skeletal muscle mass, and nutritional status.

    Methods All enrolled patients completed a questionnaire about muscle cramps. The degree of liver damage was examined using the Child-Pugh classification and the albumin-bilirubin (ALBI) grade. The nutritional status and skeletal muscle mass were examined using the Controlling Nutritional Status (CONUT) method and the psoas muscle index (PMI).

    Results Among the respondents, 55.7% of the patients reported experiencing muscle cramps. An analysis of the two patient groups-those who experienced muscle cramps and those who did not-revealed significant differences in Child-Pugh classification (muscle cramp-positive vs. muscle cramp-negative: A/B/C, 54.1%/32.4%/13.5% vs. 90.0%/10.0%/0.0%; p=0.004), ALBI grade (1/2/3, 20.5%/71.8%/7.7% vs. 54.8%/38.7%/6.5%; p=0.011), modified ALBI grade (1/2a/2b/3, 20.5%/20.5%/51.3%/7.7% vs. 54.8%/22.6%/16.1%/6.5%; p=0.008), CONUT score (normal/mild/moderate/severe, 25.6%/28.2%/41.0%/5.1% vs. 22.6%/61.3%/12.9%/3.2%; p=0.024), and PMI (3.85±1.13 cm2/m2 vs. 4.94±1.86 cm2/m2; p=0.012).

    Conclusion Our findings suggest that muscle cramps occur more frequently in patients with liver cirrhosis due to their decreased liver function and poorer nutritional status.

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  • Kenji Ito, Soichiro Yokota, Maho Watanabe, Yori Inoue, Koji Takahashi, ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1349-1357
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
    Supplementary material

    Objective A kidney biopsy is generally performed in diabetic patients to discriminate between diabetic nephropathy (DN) and non-diabetic kidney disease (NDKD) and to provide more specific treatments. This study investigated the impact of anemia on the renal pathology and the clinical course in patients who underwent a kidney biopsy.

    Methods We reviewed 81 patients with type 2 diabetes who underwent a percutaneous kidney biopsy. Patients were classified into two groups: isolated DN (DN group, n=30) and NDKD alone or concurrent DN (NDKD group, n=51) groups. The laboratory and pathological findings and clinical courses were investigated.

    Results In the NDKD group, membranous nephropathy was the most common finding (23.5%), followed by IgA nephropathy (17.6%) and crescentic glomerulonephritis (13.7%). In the logistic regression analysis, the absence of severe hematuria and presence of anemia were significantly associated with a diagnosis of DN. Akaike's information criterion (AIC) and net reclassification improvement (NRI) analyses revealed improved predictive performance by adding anemia to the conventional factors (AIC 100.152 to 91.844; NRI 27.0%). The tissues of patients in the DN group demonstrated more severe interstitial fibrosis and tubular atrophy (IF/TA) than those in the NDKD group (p<0.05) regardless of the rate of global glomerulosclerosis, and IF/TA was related to the prevalence of anemia (odds ratio: 7.31, 95% confidence interval: 2.33-23.00, p<0.01) according to a multivariable regression analysis. Furthermore, the isolated DN group demonstrated a poorer prognosis than the NDKD group.

    Conclusion DN is associated with anemia because of severe IF/TA regardless of the renal function, and anemia helps clinician discriminate clinically between isolated DN and NDKD.

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  • Tetsuya Nemoto, Satoshi Ito, Daisuke Kobayashi, Chinatsu Takai, Syunsu ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1359-1367
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    Objective To evaluate the effectiveness and drug retention rate of golimumab (GLM) for long-term use in daily practice for patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

    Methods Patients with RA who started GLM therapy with a minimum follow-up period of 52 weeks were included. The patients were divided into a biologic-naïve group and switch group. The disease activity score (DAS) 28-erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) (DAS28-ESR), grip power, and Japanese version of the health assessment questionnaire (J-HAQ) score were assessed. In addition, the treatment continuation rate was evaluated at the final follow-up.

    Patients Sixty-five patients [58 women and 7 men; median (range) age, 69 (61-74) years; median (range) disease duration, 9 (5-16) years] were included. Twenty-eight patients were biologic-naïve (naïve group), and 37 were switched to biologics (switch group).

    Results The median (range) follow-up period was 134 (58-162) weeks. The DAS28-ESR improved from a median (range) of 4.31 (3.52-5.25) to 2.65 (2.28-3.77) in the naïve group and from 4.27 (3.19-4.89) to 2.89 (2.49-3.88) in the switch group. The grip power improved in both groups (p<0.01); however, the J-HAQ score showed no marked improvement in either group. The continuation rates were 22/28 (78.6%) in the naïve group, and 26/37 (70.3%) in the switch group at the final follow-up.

    Conclusion We herein report for the first time that the long-term use of GLM improves the grip power. Improving the grip power may help prevent sarcopenia and frailty in the future. Given the efficacy and high continuation rate, we suggest that GLM would be a well-tolerated treatment option for RA.

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  • Takahiro Matsuo, Osamu Takahashi, Kazuyo Kitaoka, Hiroko Arioka, Daiki ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1369-1376
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    Objective We examined the prevalence of burnout among resident doctors and its relationship with specific stressors.

    Method We conducted a nationwide, online, cross-sectional survey in Japan with 604 resident doctors in 2018-2019.

    Materials Participants completed the Maslach Burnout Inventory-General Survey to evaluate burnout and provided details of their individual factors and working environmental factors. Chi-square tests and t-tests were conducted for categorical and continuous variables, respectively. The association between burnout and resident-reported causes of stress, ways of coping with stress, number of times patient-safety incidents were likely to occur, and individuals who provide support when in trouble was analyzed using logistic regression analyses after controlling for confounding variables.

    Results A total of 28% met the burnout criteria, 12.2% were exhausted, 2.8% were depressed, and 56.9% were healthy. After adjusting for sex, postgraduate years, type of residency program, marital status, number of inpatients under residents' care, number of working hours, number of night shifts, number of days off, and resident-reported causes of stress - excessive paperwork [odds ratio (OR): 2.24, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.32-3.80], excessive working hours (OR: 2.75, 95% CI: 1.24-6.04), low autonomy (OR: 3.92, 95% CI: 2.01-7.65), communication problems at the workplace (OR: 2.24, 95% CI: 1.05-4.76), complaints from patients (OR: 6.62, 95% CI: 1.21-36.1), peer competition (OR: 2.22, 95% CI: 1.25-3.93), and anxiety about the future (OR: 2.13, 95% CI: 1.28-3.56) - were independently associated with burnout. The burnout group had more reported patient-safety incidents that were likely to occur per year (>10) (OR: 2.65, 95% CI: 1.01-6.95) and a lack of individuals who could provide support when in trouble (OR: 1.83, 95% CI: 1.01-3.34) than the non-burnout group.

    Conclusion This study described the prevalence of burnout among residents who responded to our survey. We detected an association between burnout and resident-reported causes of stress, patient-safety incidents, and a lack of individuals who provide support when in trouble. Further interventional studies targeting ways to reduce these concerns are warranted.

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CASE REPORTS
  • Ayana Ishizaki, Kosuke Okuwaki, Mitsuhiro Kida, Hiroshi Imaizumi, Tomo ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1377-1381
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    We herein report the first case of metastatic pancreatic leiomyosarcoma derived from the urinary bladder diagnosed by an endoscopic ultrasound-guided fine-needle biopsy (EUS-FNB) in a 65-year-old woman. The patient had undergone total cystectomy for bladder leiomyosarcoma. Four years thereafter, a nodule was observed in her left lung on chest computed tomography. Suspecting primary lung cancer, pulmonologists at our hospital recommended a thoracoscopic lung biopsy, which the patient refused. Five years post-cystectomy, fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography revealed enlargement of the left lung nodule and a new mass in the pancreatic head. She was referred to our department for the pathological diagnosis of a pancreatic head mass by an EUS-FNB. The EUS-FNB yielded adequate pancreatic tissue for an immunohistochemical analysis. A diagnosis of metastatic pancreatic lesion originating from the urinary bladder was made. In atypical pancreatic tumors, the utilization of an EUS-FNB and immunohistochemical analysis can help establish an accurate diagnosis.

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  • Naoki Asayama, Shinji Nagata, Masanobu Yukutake, Hiroki Takemoto, Kenj ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1383-1387
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    A 72-year-old man had undergone uncomplicated endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) with en bloc resection of a localized 20-mm IIc lesion in the anterior wall of the gastric angle. Twenty-eight days later, he was re-admitted with epigastric pain of one-week duration. Contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CT) revealed a 60-mm mass bordered by viscera; repeat endoscopy confirmed a smooth elevated submucosal tumor at the greater curvature on the oral side of the post-ESD ulcer. We diagnosed him with a perigastric abscess as a complication of ESD and performed endoscopic ultrasound-guided drainage. Subsequently, the symptoms and blood inflammatory parameters improved, and follow-up CT showed the disappearance of the abscess.

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  • Taro Hanaoka, Kosuke Okuwaki, Hiroshi Imaizumi, Yusuke Imawari, Tomohi ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1389-1395
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    A schwannoma is a tumor originating from Schwann cells. It is occasionally observed in the abdominal viscera in the form of a submucosal tumor derived from the gastric or duodenal muscularis propria. To date, only a few studies have reported on pancreatic schwannomas. Furthermore, very few patients are preoperatively diagnosed with pancreatic schwannoma because of the lack of established imaging characteristics distinguishing this type of schwannoma from other conditions. We herein report the first English publication of pancreatic schwannoma in which surgery was avoided because a pathological diagnosis was made solely on the basis of endoscopic ultrasound-guided fine-needle aspiration findings.

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  • Miwa Kawanaka, Ken Nishino, Yumiko Morimoto, Katsunori Ishii, Tomohiro ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1397-1401
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS
    Supplementary material

    A 44-year-old patient progressed from nonalcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) cirrhosis. She was diagnosed with NAFL via a liver biopsy. At 56 years old, she was diagnosed with NASH stage 3 via a second liver biopsy. One year later, she was diagnosed with NASH cirrhosis via a third liver biopsy. This is the first study to report the gradual deterioration of liver histology shown via three liver biopsies and fibrosis markers in a patient who progressed from NAFL to NASH cirrhosis. Following menopause, it is necessary to be aware of the rapid development of liver fibrosis.

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  • Kensho Abe, Keisuke Hirai, Tomohiro Kawasaki
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1403-1407
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    Infected pseudo coronary artery aneurysm (CAA) is extremely rare, and currently, there is no established treatment. We experienced a rare case of an infected pseudo CAA brought on due to a stent fracture. Following prolonged successful antimicrobial administration, which proved effective in successfully treating the patient, we performed coronary stent graft placement. Although a surgical procedure should fundamentally be the first course of action considered in such cases, when there are concerns as to the degree of invasiveness, our strategy represents a viable option.

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  • Koji Takahashi, Tomoki Sakaue, Mina Yamashita, Daijiro Enomoto, Shigek ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1409-1415
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    In a patient with variant angina of the proximal left anterior descending coronary artery, myocardial ischemia changed the QRS-ST-T configurations without J-waves into those resembling "lambda" waves at maximal ST-segment elevation, and couplets or triplets of supraventricular extrasystole (SVE) changed the ischemia-induced "lambda" waves into QRS-ST-T configurations resembling a "tombstone" morphology or "monophasic QRS-ST complex." At the resolution phase of coronary spasm, the QRS-ST-T configurations returned to those without J-waves and were changed by SVE into "lambda" waves. Interestingly, neither ischemia- nor SVE-induced "lambda" waves or SVE-induced "tombstone" morphology or "monophasic QRS-ST complex" were complicated by ventricular tachyarrhythmia.

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  • Ryoichi Miyazaki, Keita Watanabe, Masakazu Kaneko, Sho Nagamine, Nobuh ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1417-1421
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    An 80-year-old woman with acute posterolateralmyocardial infarction, cardiogenic shock, and acute heart failure was admitted to our hospital. Transthoracic echocardiography (TTE) showed dysfunction of the left ventricular inferolateral wall motion and severe mitral valve regurgitation (MR). Emergency coronary angiography revealed triple-vessel stenosis. We performed transesophageal echocardiography in the catheter room to diagnose the cause of MR. Severe tenting of the mitral valve and no rupture of the papillary muscles were revealed. We considered ischemic MR likely to improve with revascularization and performed percutaneous coronary intervention. Subsequently, the patient's circulatory dynamics rapidly stabilized, and MR was significantly improved on follow-up TTE.

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  • Yuki Tomoda, Yukiyoshi Okauchi, Arichika Deguchi, Yu Takenoshita, Hiro ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1423-1426
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    We report the case of a 52-year-old woman with Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) and diabetes. Her diabetes was managed with sulfonylurea followed by premixed insulin; however, her glycemic control gradually worsened and became unstable. Her urine and blood C-peptide levels were undetectable. She tested positive for anti-GAD antibodies, and had a high-risk genotype - DRB1*09:01-DQB1*03:03 - for slowly progressive insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (SPIDDM) in the HLA-DR/DQ region, confirming the diagnosis of SPIDDM. Dysglycemia in PWS is thought to be attributable to hyperphagia and obesity. However, the possibility of SPIDDM might be considered if the insulin secretory capacity is almost lost in patients with PWS.

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  • Takuma Izutsu, Hiroyuki Ito, Izumi Fukuda, Hideki Tamura, Suzuko Matsu ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1427-1432
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    A 77-year-old man was treated with a DPP-4 inhibitor for type 2 diabetes. Hypoglycemia occurred frequently, and an examination revealed a tumor with a maximum diameter of 140 mm in both lobes of the liver. Western immunoblotting detected a high-molecular-weight form of insulin-like growth factor-II, and non-islet cell tumor hypoglycemia was diagnosed. Although prednisolone 40 mg was started, hypoglycemia continued to occur frequently. Surgical tumor removal was not indicated, so lenvatinib was initiated. Hypoglycemia improved quickly, and the tumor shrank until it had partially disappeared. His condition continued to improve, and he was discharged.

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  • Tatsuya Kondo, Sayaka Kitano, Nobukazu Miyakawa, Takuro Watanabe, Riek ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1433-1442
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    The gastrointestinal tract is considered an important endocrine organ for controlling glucose homeostasis via the production of incretins. A 21-year-old man emergently underwent total colectomy due to severe ulcerative colitis, and overt diabetes became evident. Weekly administration of a glucagon-like peptide (GLP)-1 receptor agonist (RA) dramatically improved his glucose control. Levels of GLP-1 or gastric inhibitory polypeptide (GIP) were low at the baseline in the duodenum and serum of the patient. After 11 months of GLP-1RA treatment, his HbA1c worsened again, and intensive insulin therapy was necessary to control his glucose levels. Our report may explain the significance of residual incretin for maintaining the pancreatic β-cell function.

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  • Hiroaki Matsuura, Keiichi Fujiwara, Hiroki Omori, Kiriko Onishi, Tadah ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1443-1450
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 16, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    We herein report a 56-year-old woman who developed allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) possibly due to fungal exposure after disastrous heavy rainfall in Western Japan in 2018. She was diagnosed with ABPA complicated with asthma, increased peripheral blood eosinophil count, elevation of specific immunoglobulin E for Aspergillus fumigatus, positive Aspergillus fumigatus precipitation antibody reaction test results, and notable chest computed tomography findings. After treatment with benralizumab, her symptoms, peripheral blood eosinophil count, radiological findings, and respiratory function dramatically improved. The administration of benralizumab appears to be an effective treatment strategy for ABPA.

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  • Yuki Yoshimatsu, Kazunori Tobino, Takafumi Kawabata, Naoki Noguchi, Ry ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1451-1456
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    While aspiration pneumonia constitutes the majority of pneumonia cases in the elderly, it remains highly underdiagnosed. We experienced a case of recurrent pneumonia and chronic cough that was later diagnosed as aspiration pneumonia and diffuse aspiration bronchiolitis (DAB) due to recurrent hemorrhaging from an intramedullary cavernous malformation. The patient was finally diagnosed when life-threatening respiratory depression caused emergency attention. This is the first report of hemorrhaging from an intramedullary cavernous malformation diagnosed due to aspiration pneumonia and DAB. These findings highlight the importance of considering aspiration in cases with recurrent pneumonia or chronic cough. The underlying cause may be a life-threatening condition.

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  • Hideaki Yamakawa, Tamiko Takemura, Shintaro Sato, Tomohiko Nakamura, T ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1457-1462
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: December 07, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    We herein report four cases of diffuse bronchiolitis proven by a transbronchial lung cryobiopsy (TBLC). Based on various aspects, including the pathological findings, we definitively diagnosed two patients with diffuse panbronchiolitis (DPB) and the other two with primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD). One of the DPB patients had more severe peribronchiolar fibrosis than the other, and the disease course was refractory to macrolide therapy. One of the PCD patients was additionally diagnosed with combined constrictive bronchiolitis. This report highlights the importance of a TBLC in the differentiation of bronchiolitis, suggesting its utility for helping pulmonologists formulate a treatment strategy.

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  • Atsuhiko Sugiyama, Masahide Suzuki, Tomoki Suichi, Tomohiko Uchida, Ta ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1463-1468
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 23, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    We herein report a case of anti-N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) encephalitis concurrent with NH2-terminal of α-enolase (NAE) antibodies. A 36-year-old Japanese woman presented with Gerstmann's syndrome followed by jerky involuntary movements, seizure, autonomic instability, and consciousness disturbance. NAE antibodies were detected in the serum; however, NMDAR antibodies were identified in the cerebrospinal fluid with a cell-based assay, confirming the diagnosis of anti-NMDAR encephalitis. This case highlights the fact that Gerstmann's syndrome can be a manifestation of anti-NMDAR encephalitis and that NAE may be identified concurrently with NMDAR antibodies, suggesting that the diagnosis of Hashimoto encephalopathy requires the reasonable exclusion of alternative diagnoses, including anti-NMDAR encephalitis.

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  • Takamasa Kitaoji, Yukiko Tsuji, Yu-ichi Noto, Shinji Ashida, Akihiro T ...
    2021 Volume 60 Issue 9 Pages 1469-1473
    Published: May 01, 2021
    Released: May 01, 2021
    [Advance publication] Released: November 30, 2020
    JOURNALS OPEN ACCESS

    We herein report a 73-year-old woman case with sarcoid neuropathy showing nerve enlargement assessed by nerve ultrasound both before and after treatment. The site of conduction block in the left tibial nerve corresponded to the site of nerve enlargement with a hypo-echoic pattern. After treatment with prednisolone, nerve ultrasound detected the remission of the nerve enlargement, and the conduction block and clinical symptoms also improved. Nerve enlargement may reflect inflammation of the peripheral nerve. A follow-up study of sonographic nerve enlargement may be of clinical significance for assessing the effectiveness of treatment for sarcoid neuropathy.

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