[Cerebellar dysfunction due to pneumonia caused by Legionella pneumophila].Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 2013; 157(20):A5643.NT
Legionnaires' disease is frequently complicated by extrapulmonary symptoms such as neurological abnormalities. Cerebellar disorders are rare, but can be long-lasting and disabling.
A 57-year-old male developed severe cerebellar disorders such as dysarthria and ataxia after being hospitalized for pneumonia. Despite an extensive diagnostic work-up, no explanation for the cerebellar symptoms could be found. The patient was transferred to a rehabilitation facility. Repeated serological tests revealed infection with Legionella, which was most probably the cause of the cerebellar dysfunction.
Cerebellar disorders are a rare complication of Legionnaires' disease. The pathogenesis is unknown. There is no diagnostic test that proves or excludes cerebellar involvement in an infection caused by Legionella. The treatment is supportive and recovery can take months or even years.