[Clinical characteristics and follow-up of pediatric patients with neuromyelitis optica and neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders].Zhonghua Er Ke Za Zhi 2015; 53(4):268-73ZE
To analyze the clinical characteristics of pediatric neuromyelitis optica (NMO) and neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders (NMOSD).
A retrospective analysis was performed evaluating clinical and laboratory characteristics of ten NMO and NMOSD children who were seen in our hospital from December 2010 to May 2014. Median age at onset was 8.9 years (range 0.8-13.8 years). Seven cases were female and three were male. Median disease duration was 1.5 months (range 1-18.5 months).
Eight patients fulfilled diagnostic criteria for NMO and two patients fulfilled diagnostic criteria for NMOSD. The two NMOSD patients had recurrent longitudinally extensive transverse myelitis. Four cases had a monophasic disease course, and six cases had a recurrent course. In eight NMO patients, neuritis was the initial presentation. The two NMOSD patients had no neuritis in the first attack. Nine cases had clinical manifestations of myelitis, one case had asymptomatic spinal cord MRI anomaly. Among the ten patients, seven cases had brain lesions, wherein, four cases had the midbrain involvement and in four cases extensive hemispheric white matter was involved. Three cases had medullary involvement. And two cases had posterior limb of the internal capsule involvement, two cases had thalamus involvement. In one case there was pons, cerebellum or corpus callosum involvement, respectively. One case had accompanied brain symptoms. Of the five patients who had symptomatic brain lesions, four cases had encephalopathy accompanied by large hemispheric lesions on MRI, having a presentation similar to acute disseminated encephalomyelitis. And one case had multiple sclerosis like brain lesion. Of the ten patients tested, nine were seropositive for anti-aquaporin-4 autoantibody. One-patient was complicated with systemic lupus erythematosus. Oligoclonal bands were negative in all cases. All patients received treatment for acute attacks with high-dose intravenous methylprednisolone and intravenous gammaglobulin. The symptoms of 8 cases mitigated. Two cases whose symptoms showed no sign of improvement received plasmapheresis for acute attacks. Seven of the patients were followed up. The median duration of follow-up was 19 months (ranged from 13 months to 30 months). The median Expanded disability status (EDSS) score was 3 (range 1-7).
Pediatric NMO and(or) NMOSD have a diverse clinical presentation which are more than just optic neuritis and transverse myelitis, including brain symptom. So it may be difficult to distinguish NMO and(or) NMOSD from acute disseminating encephalomyelitis and multiple sclerosis in the early stages of the disease. Antibodies to aquapoin-4 (AQP-Ab) testing is very important for differential diagnosis.