EEG extreme delta brush: An ictal pattern in patients with anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis.Epilepsy Behav. 2015 Aug; 49:280-5.EB
The anti-NMDA receptor (NMDAr) encephalitis-associated syndrome includes neuropsychiatric symptoms, impaired consciousness, seizures, autonomic instability, and hypoventilation. The electroencephalographic (EEG) activity throughout the course of the disease has still not been well documented. We reviewed electroclinical data of patients with NMDAr encephalitis to characterize their EEG and its clinical correlation.
MATERIAL AND METHODS
We retrospectively identified 16 patients with NMDAr encephalitis from 8 Spanish medical centers, 15 of whom underwent video-EEG in the acute phase.
In 15 patients (11 females, median age: 37.4, range: 14-87 years), seizures occurred in 9 (60%) and status epilepticus (SE) in 5 (33.3%). Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was abnormal in 10 (66.6%), and CSF (cerebrospinal fluid) was normal in 3 and abnormal in 12, with positive PCR (polymerase chain reaction) for Mycoplasma pneumoniae (1/15) and herpes simple virus (1/15). An ovarian teratoma was found in 1 patient and other malignancies (small cell lung carcinoma) in 1 patient. The EEG was abnormal in the acute phase in 14/15 (93.3%). Extreme delta brush (EDB) was observed in 5 (33.3%), and the presence of EDB was associated with SE in all cases. Rhythmic delta activity without EDB was observed in 5 (33.3%), while excessive beta activity was present in 4 (26.6%). Extreme delta brush can follow a pattern of well-characterized electroclinical seizures.
Almost invariably, patients with NMDAr encephalitis had abnormal EEG. The presence of EDB, which can follow a pattern of well-characterized electroclinical seizures, in our patients was associated with seizures and SE. These findings suggest that EDB could be an evolutive pattern of an SE in NMDAr encephalitis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled "Status Epilepticus".