Multiple sclerosis vs acute disseminated encephalomyelitis in childhood.

Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Pediatric Neurology (Impact Factor: 1.42). 10/2003; 29(3):227-31. DOI: 10.1016/S0887-8994(03)00235-2
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The initial presenting clinical and laboratory findings of either acute disseminated encephalomyelitis or the first attack of multiple sclerosis in the pediatric population were compared and contrasted. A retrospective review of the medical records was conducted of all children younger than 17 years who presented with either the diagnosis of acute disseminated encephalomyelitis or multiple sclerosis between 1987 and 2001. Seventeen cases of clinically definite multiple sclerosis (seven female, mean age 12.4 +/- 4.5 years) and seven cases of acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (three female; mean age 8.7 +/- 3.8 years) were reviewed. Systemic and nonfocal neurologic symptoms were more commonly evident in acute disseminated encephalomyelitis than in multiple sclerosis: fever (43% vs 6%), headache (57% vs 24%), fatigue (71% vs 29%), vomiting (57% vs 0%), and encephalopathy (71% vs 6%). In multiple sclerosis patients, T(2)-weighted white matter magnetic resonance imaging lesions were more commonly located in the corpus callosum (64% vs 17%) and the periventricular area (91% vs 50%) compared with those in patients with acute disseminated encephalomyelitis. These results suggest that acute disseminated encephalomyelitis and multiple sclerosis can be differentiated to some degree according to clinical and radiologic data at initial presentation, which is important because the long-term prognosis for childhood multiple sclerosis appears to be less favorable.

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    ABSTRACT: ADEM, although relatively uncommon, is probably under-recognized. To spotlight the clinical profile and therapeutic outcome of children with ADEM. This is a prospective study of patients with ADEM who were admitted to the Pediatric Departments in Aladan and Alfarawanya Hospitals in Kuwait, from January 2009 to January 2011. Clinical, microbiological and radiological data were analyzed. Of 48 patients presented with acute neurological symptoms and signs, 21 patients fulfilled criteria for ADEM. 80.95% of cases were presenting in winter and spring, 57% of patients had a history of upper respiratory tract illness. The commonest presentations were motor deficits, convulsions and altered consciousness. CSF virology studies showed herpes simplex virus (HSV) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) (3 patients) whereas nasal and nasopharyngeal swab showed evidence of influenza H1N1 virus (1 patient). Brain MRI was performed in all patients and revealed multiple hyperintense supratentorial brain lesions on T2/FLAIR images. 85.7% of patients had cortical and/or subcortical white matter lesions which were bilateral and asymmetric in location and size. ADEM although rare must be considered in children with acute onset of neurological signs and symptoms and must be distinguished from any acute neurological insult.
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    ABSTRACT: Multiple sclerosis (MS) starting in childhood and adolescence poses a challenge for diagnosis and management of the disease. The aim of the present study was to assess the characteristics of early onset MS in Brazilian patients. Methods Retrospective data collection from specialized MS units. Results From 20 MS units in 11 Brazilian states, 117 cases of MS starting before the age of 18 years were collected. These patients had an average of 10 years of disease duration, still typically with low disability and one relapse every 2.5 years. The mean age for disease onset was 13.7 years. Conclusion The present study introduces a large series of Brazilian cases of pediatric MS. Although some patients presented a very severe form of MS, on the whole the group of patients with MS starting in childhood or adolescence presented a relatively mild form of this disease in Brazil.
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