Some important clinical differences exist between human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-seropositive and HIV-seronegative patients. Alterations in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) cytokines and matrix metalloproteinase have been noted in tuberculous meningitis. In HIV-infected patients, the immunopathogenesis is expected to be different.
Materials and Methods:
In this study, 64 patients of tuberculous meningitis (28 HIV seropositive and 36 seronegative) were included. The patients were followed up for six months. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples of tuberculous meningitis patients and 20 controls were subjected to tissue necrosis factor (TNF)-α, interleukin (IL)-1β, interferon (IFN)-γ, IL-10, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2, and MMP-9 estimations. The levels were correlated with the patients’ baseline clinical characteristics, CSF parameters, neuroimaging findings, and the outcome. The outcome was assessed and modified with the Barthel index.
The CSF cytokines and MMP levels were significantly elevated in tuberculous meningitis when compared with the controls. There was no significant difference seen between HIV seropositive and seronegative tuberculous meningitis, except for the IL-1β level, which was significantly lower in the HIV-infected patients. The cytokine and MMP levels did not correlate with the baseline clinical characteristics, disease severity, cerebrospinal fluid characteristics, neuroimaging findings, and outcome.
In conclusion, HIV infection did not affect a majority of the CSF cytokines and MMP levels in tuberculous meningitis except for IL-1β level. None of the estimated inflammatory parameters correlated with the outcome.
Cytokines; human immunodeficiency virus; matrix metalloproteinases; tuberculous meningitis
Acute confusional state/delirium is a frequent cause of hospital admission, in the elderly. It is characterized by an acute fluctuating impairment of cognitive functions and inattention. Recognition and prompt treatment is crucial to decrease the morbidity and mortality associated with it.
Materials and Methods:
In this retrospective study, we determined the etiology and prognostic factors of an acute confusional state. A total of 52 patients of acute confusional state were clinically evaluated. All patients were also subjected to a battery blood biochemical examination, cerebrospinal fluid analysis and neuroimaging. Disability was assessed by using modified Barthel index (MBI). Patients were followed-up for 3 months.
The mean age of our cohort was 65.04 ± 10.6 years. 32 (61.5%) patients were male. In 33 patients, we were able to identify possible precipitating cause of an acute confusional state. In the rest of the patients results of all the tests were normal. Leukocytosis and hyponatremia were frequent factors associated with delirium. The mean duration of the hospital stay was 10.73 ± 3.6 days (range 5-21 days). Patients with an abnormal work-up (possible precipitating cause) had significantly lower mortality, less duration of hospital stay and less severe disability after 3 months. Age, underlying illness, serum creatinine, abnormal neuroimaging and MBI were identified as a significant prognostic indicator. 18 (34.6%) of our patients died, of these in 10 patients we could not find a precipitating cause.
Patients, in whom a cause was found out, had better prognosis in terms of lesser mortality and the duration of hospital stay.
Acute confusional state; confusion assessment method; delirium index; modified Barthel index
Neuromyotonia is characterized by motor, sensory, and autonomic features along with characteristic electrophysiologic findings, resulting from hyperexcitability of the peripheral nerves. We describe the case of a 36-year-old man, who presented with the disabling symptoms suggestive of focal neuromyotonia involving both the lower limbs. His neurological examination revealed continuous rippling of both the calf muscles with normal power, reflexes, and sensory examination. Electrophysiology revealed spontaneous activity in the form of doublets, triplets, and neuromyotonic discharges along with the neurogenic motor unit potentials in bilateral L5, S1 innervated muscles. Magnetic resonance imaging lumbosacral spine revealed lumbar intervertebral disc protrusion with severe foraminal and spinal canal stenosis. Patient had good response to steroids and carbamazepine. The disabling focal neuromyotonia, occurring as a result of chronic active radiculopathy, brought the patient to medical attention. Patient responded to medical management.
Electrophysiology; magnetic resonance imaging; neuromyotonia; radiculopathy
Hypokalemic paralysis is characterized by episodes of acute muscle weakness associated with hypokalemia. In this study, we evaluated the possible etiological factors in patients of hypokalemic paralysis.
Materials and Methods:
We reviewed the records of 29 patients who were admitted with a diagnosis of hypokalemic paralysis. Modified Guillain-Barre´ Syndrome disability scale was used to grade the disability.
In this study, 15 (51.7%) patients had secondary causes of hypokalemic paralysis and 14 patients (42.3%) had idiopathic hypokalemic paralysis. Thyrotoxicosis was present in six patients (20.6%), dengue infection in four patients (13.7%), distal renal tubular acidosis in three patients (10.3%), Gitelman syndrome in one patient (3.4%), and Conn's syndrome in one patient (3.4%). Preceding history of fever and rapid recovery was seen in dengue infection-induced hypokalemic paralysis. Approximately 62% patients had elevated serum creatinine phosphokinase. All patients had recovered completely following potassium supplementation. Patients with secondary causes were older in age, had significantly more disability, lower serum potassium levels, and took longer time to recover.
In conclusion, more than half of patients had secondary causes responsible for hypokalemic paralysis. Dengue virus infection was the second leading cause of hypokalemic paralysis, after thyrotoxicosis. Presence of severe disability, severe hypokalemia, and a late disease onset suggested secondary hypokalemic paralysis.
Acute flaccid paralysis; dengue virus; hypokalemia; hypokalemic paralysis
Spinal tuberculosis is a destructive form of tuberculosis. It accounts for approximately half of all cases of musculoskeletal tuberculosis. Spinal tuberculosis is more common in children and young adults. The incidence of spinal tuberculosis is increasing in developed nations. Genetic susceptibility to spinal tuberculosis has recently been demonstrated. Characteristically, there is destruction of the intervertebral disk space and the adjacent vertebral bodies, collapse of the spinal elements, and anterior wedging leading to kyphosis and gibbus formation. The thoracic region of vertebral column is most frequently affected. Formation of a ‘cold’ abscess around the lesion is another characteristic feature. The incidence of multi-level noncontiguous vertebral tuberculosis occurs more frequently than previously recognized. Common clinical manifestations include constitutional symptoms, back pain, spinal tenderness, paraplegia, and spinal deformities. For the diagnosis of spinal tuberculosis magnetic resonance imaging is more sensitive imaging technique than x-ray and more specific than computed tomography. Magnetic resonance imaging frequently demonstrates involvement of the vertebral bodies on either side of the disk, disk destruction, cold abscess, vertebral collapse, and presence of vertebral column deformities. Neuroimaging-guided needle biopsy from the affected site in the center of the vertebral body is the gold standard technique for early histopathological diagnosis. Antituberculous treatment remains the cornerstone of treatment. Surgery may be required in selected cases, e.g. large abscess formation, severe kyphosis, an evolving neurological deficit, or lack of response to medical treatment. With early diagnosis and early treatment, prognosis is generally good.
Tuberculosis; Myelopathy; Spinal cord; Antituberculous treatment; Cold abscess; Mycobacterium tuberculosis
Transient signal abnormality in the splenium of corpus callosum on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is occasionally encountered in clinical practice. It has been reported in various clinical conditions apart from patients with epilepsy. We describe 4 patients with different etiologies presenting with signal changes in the splenium of corpus callosum. They were diagnosed as having progressive myoclonic epilepsy (case 1), localization-related epilepsy (case 2), hemicrania continua (case 3), and postinfectious parkinsonism (case 4). While three patients had complete involvement of the splenium on diffusion-weighted image (“boomerang sign”), the patient having hemicrania continua showed semilunar involvement (“mini-boomerang”) on T2-weighted and FLAIR image. All the cases had noncontiguous involvement of the splenium. We herein, discuss these cases with transient splenial involvement and stress that such patients do not need aggressive diagnostic and therapeutic interventions. An attempt has been made to review the literature regarding the pathophysiology, etiology, and outcome of such lesions.
Boomerang sign; corpus callosum; diffusion-weighted imaging; epilepsy; hemicrania continua; measles; magnetic resonance imaging; splenium
Spinal tuberculosis or Pott's disease of the spine associated with pleural involvement has long intrigued researchers regarding the nature and pathogenesis of their occurrence. We describe two interesting patients of spinal tuberculosis, one with cervical and another with thoracic spine disease, with pleural involvement, which developed after lateral extension of cold abscess involving the parietal pleura, and without any evidence of pulmonary disease.
Takayasu's arteritis is a chronic, idiopathic, medium and large vessel vasculitis involving aorta and its main branches. Frequent neurological manifestations include postural syncope, seizures, and blindness. Stroke, as presenting feature of Takayasu's arteritis, is unusual. CT angiography reveals characteristic involvement of aortic arch and its branches. Involvement of intracranial vasculature is rather unusual. We are describing an unusual patient of Takayasu's arteritis who presented with recurrent disabling syncopal attacks and had extensive involvement of intracranial vasculature. CT angiography revealed severe involvement of aortic arch. There was near complete occlusion at origins of both subclavian arteries, distal flow was maintained by collateral vessels along the chest wall. There was near total occlusion (at origin) of right common carotid with normal flow in distal part. The left common carotid was more severely involved showing greater than 80% narrowing in proximal half of the vessel. CT angiography also revealed involvement of left internal carotid artery, narrowing of left middle cerebral artery and involvement of cortical vessels. Patient was treated with oral corticosteroids. She improved remarkably after two and half months of follow up.
Takayasu's arteritis; vasculitis; stroke
The objective of the study was to assess the reliability and validity of the Hindi translation of the Migraine Disability Assessment (MIDAS) and Headache Impact Test-6 (HIT-6) questionnaires.
Materials and Methods:
The study was conducted on the migraine patients. For test–retest reliability, the respondents filled the MIDAS and HIT-6 questionnaires twice, at an interval of three weeks. For validity, the same population of patients filled the headache diary for three months. After three months they filled the MIDAS and HIT-6 questionnaires again. The patients were subgrouped according to their occupation and level of education. The test–retest reliability and validity were calculated by the Pearson correlation coefficient. Internal consistency was calculated using the Cronbach alpha.
A total of 236 migraine patients were screened. Seventy-nine patients fulfilled the inclusion criteria. A total of 69 patients completed the study. The HIT-6 questionnaire was applicable to all the subgroups of patients and had better comprehensibility than the MIDAS. Housewives missed out on the first two questions of the MIDAS and had lower mean MIDAS scores than HIT-6. The test–retest correlation coefficients for the total MIDAS and HIT-6 scores were 0.94 and 0.81, respectively. The correlation coefficients between the total score in the headache diary equivalent and the MIDAS and HIT-6 total score were 0.91 and 0.77, respectively. Cronbach alpha, a measure of internal consistency for the MIDAS questionnaire was > 0.90 at all the compilations. For the HIT-6 questionnaire, it ranged from 0.67 to 0.79.
The Hindi versions of MIDAS and HIT-6 questionnaires were reliable and valid, but could not be interchanged. HIT-6 had better comprehensibility.
Headache Disability; HIT-6; migraine disability assessment; migraine; reliability; validity
Leprosy is an important cause of cranial nerve palsy in endemic areas where it may be seen in upto 17.6% patients. The authors herein describe a rare case of bilaterally symmetrical facial synkinesis with video documentation and modified blink reflex. A 35-year-old gentleman presented with numbness involving right half of his face for 8 months and abnormal stretching sensations over both sides of his nose for one and a half months. Sensory and motor involvement of the right trigeminal nerve was detected along with bilaterally symmetrical facial synkinesis involving orbicularis oculi and nasalis. R1 and R2 responses consistent with mis-reinnervation were recorded on the left-side using orbicularis oculi and nasalis muscles. Skin biopsy revealed acid-fast bacilli and sural nerve biopsy, the presence of granulomas. After 3 months of follow-up on WHO multi-drug therapy, an improvement in facial sensations was observed but without any change in facial synkinetic movements.
Parkinson׳s disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder. The exact cause of selective dopaminergic
neurodegeneration is unknown, but it is supposed that etiology of Parkinson׳s disease is multifactorial and consists of an
interaction between environmental factors and genetic predisposition. To find out the association between environmental factors
and risk of Parkinson׳s disease, a case control study was designed including 97 Parkinson׳s disease patients and 97 controls.
Logistic regression analysis was used to determine the risk factors for Parkinson׳s disease. Results from the present study showed
that gender, religion, education, place of living, occupation, dietary habits, tobacco chewing, smoking, alcohol intake, and head
injury had no association with PD. However, chemical exposure and well water drinking were significantly associated with PD,
which concluded that environmental factors could act as a risk factor for PD in some way.
Parkinson׳s disease; risk factors; chemical exposure; well water
Dengue, an acute viral disease transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, is highly endemic in many tropical and subtropical areas of the world. Neurological complications of dengue infection have been observed more frequently in the recent past and some studies highlighted varied neurological complications arising in the course of dengue illness. In this retrospective study, we report various neurological complications observed during the last 2 years in patients of dengue fever.
Materials and Methods:
The patients presenting with neurological complications with positive serology (IgM antibody) for dengue infection were consecutively recruited from the Department of Neurology/Medicine from a tertiary center of Lucknow, India. These patients were subjected to a detailed clinical evaluation, laboratory assessment including blood count, hematocrit, coagulation parameters, biochemical assays, serology for dengue fever, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for human immunodeficiency virus and other relevant investigations.
Twenty-six patients with neurological complications associated with confirmed dengue infection were observed during the last 2 years. Eighteen of these patients were male. Of the 26 patients, 10 patients were suffering from brachial neuritis, four patients had encephalopathy, three patients were consistent with the diagnosis of Guillain Barre syndrome, three patients had hypokalemic paralysis associated with dengue fever and two patients had acute viral myositis. Opsoclonus-myoclonus syndrome was diagnosed in two patients, myelitis in one patient and acute disseminated encephalo-myelitis also in one patient.
Dengue fever was associated with widespread neurological complications. Brachial neuritis and opsoclonus-myoclonus syndrome were observed for the first time in this study.
Brachial neuritis; dengue fever; hypokalemic paralysis; myositis; neurological complications