Age: 53 Sex: male. Appendectomy at 5 years old.
At 10 years old post-trauma fracture of left clavicle.
In 1984 and in 1985 post-trauma fractures of left foot.
In September, 2007 left lower limb and left upper limb hyposthenia with mainly distal motor clumsiness. Appearance, furthermore, of left upper limb hypotrophy and diffuse fasciculations all over his body, in particular after an effort.
Following the advice of a specialist in neurology, the patient has performed on 12/2007 an MRI of the brain (within normal limits) and an MRI of overall rachis (posteromedian disc protrusion C4-C5; total disc protrusion C6-C7; left paramedian posterior disc hernia L1-L2; posterior disc protrusion L4-L5. Thin hydrosyringomyelic cavity at the dorsal marrow level in the D6-D7 segment. No enhancement after contrast medium).
A neurological specialist’s examination was, therefore, performed as well as Day Hospital at theout-patients Department for Motor Neuron Diseases on 01/2008; during the Day hospital a sample was taken for thyroid function test, estimation of neoplastic markers, antigangliosides antibodies, auto-antibody asset and genetic investigation for SOD 1 (see enclosed documentation no. 1).
Further hospitalization at University Neurology Unit II of the Hospital of Bari for diagnostic completion and, so, the patient was dismissed with diagnosis of “suspect motor neuron disease”. A few days later a neurological specialist's examination was performed. It advised, considering the not perfect diagnostic definition, the ANA positivity in serum and the anti-borrelia Igm in serum, as well as CSF immunoblotting finding of “G type Paraproteinemia” and the increase to the standard CSF-serum albumin quotient, a therapy with Rilutex 1 tablet x 2 daily, Rigentex 400 mg 1 tablet x 2 daily, Deltacortene 25 mg ½ tablet daily for 15 days followed by ¼ tablet for the next 15 days plus IVIG cycles with reported improvement (< frequency) of cramps and fasciculations.
The disease follows a progressive course and the patient shows, at present, a left “hackney gait”.
At the neurological visit on September 2008 there are proofs of:
- at the inspection - evocable, spontaneous, widespread fasciculations at percussion; significant hypotrophy of the proximal muscles of the left upper limb. Subjective gradual strength reduction.
at the neurologic examination :
- Nothing on the cranial nerves (with the exclusion of a light congenital strabismus)
- muscle tone within normal limits
- Proximal hypotrophy especially on the left upper limb; lumbrical and interossei hypotrophy more evident on the left side
- Osteotendinous reflex within normal limits.
- Mingazzini within normal limits
- Abdominal reflexes: light reduction on the left side more evident at the epigastric level
- Babinski negative bilaterally
- Complete sensitivities.
Noteworthy examinations performed
Immunologic examinations (1/08):
Positive ANA with a titer of 1/320
IgG subclasses IgG4 3.69 (n.v. (normal values) 0.08 – 1.40)
CPK 444 (n.v. 35 – 232)
CSF analysis (2/08):
ALIQUOT 1: N.V.:
Appearance clear clear
Colour lightly hematic colourless
RBCs 659/mmc absent
WBCs 10/mmc 100% lymphocytes <5
proteins 58 mg/dL <40
glucose 55 mg/dL 35-65
CSF glucose/serum 0.65 >0.6
lactate 14.5 10 – 22
Appearance clear clear
Colour colourless colourless
RBCs 325/mmc absent
WBCs 11/mmc 100% lymphocytes <5
Evoked potentials (08/08 only conclusions):
Negative SEP and MEP
EMG (08/08 only conclusions):
Signs of denervation in the muscles of the four limbs.
EMG findings within the limits in the right masseter muscle.
The first sensory nerve cell is complete.
Normal motor conduction untill the Erb’s point of the examined nerve trunks to the upper limbs, normal lantencies of the recurrent responses (F wave).
Within the normal limits is the motor conduction to the lower limbs where a fall of amplitude of the M answer in proximal site on the left deep peroneal nerve is reported, this to be related to an abundant denervation and at the beginning site of the clinical symptomatology.
All in all, electric findings compatible with the motor neuron disease with signs of denervation within the investigated appendicular muscles (4 limbs) and small signs of reinnervation; no signs of denervation in the right masseter.
MR brain and overall rachis (08/ synthesis):
The study of the pyramidal tract in all his course did not give evidence of signal alterations. In comparison with the previous examination (12/07) reduction of the hydromyelic cavity present at level D6-D7.
Clinical considerations on the course of the illness and on the performed therapy (by the patient’s specialist:
In the outpatient treatment with riluzole and cortisone, the patient underwent the first IVIG infusion taking great advantage from it: moderate functional psychological recovery; the other infusion cycles (when the cortisone treatment was suspended) did not improve the symptomatology.