Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy

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It is a rare viral infection caused by demyelination of nerves. The condition is a failure of cellular immunity. It is a fatal complication of diseases such as lymphoma, leukemia, SLE, HIV infection and sarcoidosis.

MRI showing progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy

Etiology[edit | edit source]

Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) is caused by reactivation of saprophytic papovavir.

Clinical picture[edit | edit source]

Papovirus attacks oligodendroglia and causes demyelination of nerves. This process takes place without any signs of inflammation. Important clinical symptoms include:

Patients may have extensive diffuse hemispheric involvement and death occurs without remission in 3-6 months.

Diagnosis[edit | edit source]

Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy is in most cases diagnosed at an advanced stage. Brain biopsy, CT and MRI. In these examinations, we observe multi-focal changes in white matter. In the cerebrospinal fluid we find an increase in gamma globulins.

Therapy[edit | edit source]

There is no therapy for this disease yet, with half of the patients dying within a few months of diagnosis. [1]

Links[edit | edit source]

Related articles[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. SEIDL, Zdeněk – OBENBERGER, Jiří. Neurologie pro studium i praxi. 1. edition. Praha : Grada Publishing, 2004. ISBN 80-247-0623-7.

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