Two patients with an anti-N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antibody syndrome-like presentation and negative results of testing for autoantibodies.
We describe two boys whose distinct and remarkable clinical pictures suggested the possibility of anti-N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor antibody encephalitis. Both patients responded to immunotherapy, but neither manifested that antibody. Patient 1 exhibited florid encephalopathy with psychotic manifestations including inappropriate affect, intermittent delirium, visual hallucinations, severe anorexia, agitation, paranoid ideation, and abnormal electroencephalogram results. He responded to intravenous immunoglobulin, with steady improvement over 3 months to almost complete remission for 1 year, followed by a relapse that again responded, more quickly, to intravenous immunoglobulin. A second relapse occurred 1 month later, and again responded to intravenous immunoglobulin. Patient 2 exhibited progressive, severely debilitating limb dystonia that worsened over 1.5 years, with milder psychiatric symptoms including mood instability, aggressiveness, impulsivity, and depression. When he developed thymic hyperplasia 1.5 years into his illness, he underwent a thymectomy, and improved significantly on a regimen of plasmapheresis and intravenous immunoglobulin. Patients presenting with symptoms suggestive of autoimmune encephalitis, but without antibodies, may still respond to immunotherapy.
Shah, R; Veerapandiyan, A; Winchester, S; Gallentine, W; Mikati, MA
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