Neurological complications of neurofibromatosis type 1 in adulthood.
Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is a genetic disease with a wide range of neurological manifestations. To examine these, and to evaluate neurological morbidity in adulthood of patients with NF1, we studied a hospital-based series of 158 patients that included 138 adult patients aged >18 years and 20 children. NF1 evaluation included a multidisciplinary clinical and a clinically oriented radiological investigation. Neurological events occurring during childhood (in both children and adults of the series) and adulthood were recorded. One or several neurological manifestations have been observed in 55% of patients (adults and children) (n = 87). These included: headache (28 patients); hydrocephalus (7); epilepsy (5); lacunar stroke (1); white matter disease (1); intraspinal neurofibroma (3); facial palsy (1); radiculopathy (5); and polyneuropathy (2). Tumours included: optic pathway tumours (20); meningioma (2); cerebral glioma (3); and malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumours (6). Life-threatening complications were observed in five adults and included four malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumours and one meningioma. Pain was the leading symptom in 11 adults and was related to malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumours, complications of intraspinal neurofibromas, subcutaneous neurofibromas and peripheral nerve neurofibromas. NF1 in adults was not associated with other disabling or life-threatening neurological complications. Symptomatic optic pathway tumours, cerebral gliomas, symptomatic aqueductal stenosis and spinal compression due to intraspinal NF were observed exclusively during childhood. In this series, the predominant neurological features of adults with NF1 were chronic pain and malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumours. (+info)
Ganglioglioma of the optic chiasm: case report and review of the literature.
We report a case of a hypothalamic chiasmatic ganglioglioma in a 21-year-old woman who presented with hyperprolactinemia and developed visual field defects. This circumscribed cystic lesion with an enhancing mural nodule was radiologically indistinguishable from a pilocytic astrocytoma. Although rare, gangliogliomas should be included in the differential diagnosis of lesions occurring in this area of the brain. (+info)
Carboplatin is effective therapy for young children with progressive optic pathway tumors: a Pediatric Oncology Group phase II study.
The Pediatric Oncology Group conducted a phase II study to evaluate the activity of carboplatin in children 5 years or younger with progressive optic pathway tumors (OPTs). Of the 51 patients accrued to this study, 1 was not eligible because the child was older than 6 years. Fifty patients were eligible and had either neuro-imaging or symptomatic evidence of progressive OPTs. Twenty-one of 50 had evidence of neurofibromatosis type I (NF-1). Therapy consisted of carboplatin 560 mg/m2 at 4-week intervals. Patients with stable disease or better after two courses were continued on therapy for 18 months or until progressive disease. Of the 50 eligible children, 39 had stable disease or better, and 34 completed the 18-month therapy. Our data are sufficient to conclude that the proportion of objective responses (complete, partial, or minor response or stable disease) exceeded 30% (P < 0.00001), and the approximate 95% confidence interval estimate of the objective response rate was 0.665 to 0.895. Twenty-one patients went off protocol because of progressive disease. Fifteen patients progressed during the 18-month therapy, and 6 patients progressed after completing therapy. Six children died with progressive disease. Major toxicities were neutropenia and thrombocytopenia, and 3 children experienced allergic reactions. Carboplatin is active and safe for the treatment of young children with progressive OPTs. The addition of other potentially active drugs may further increase the event-free survival for these children. (+info)
Patients with persistent pain after enucleation studied by MRI dynamic color mapping and histopathology.
PURPOSE: To study possible causes of persistent pain in patients who underwent enucleation of the globe and in whom all other noninvasively detectable causes of pain had been ruled out. METHODS: Twenty patients were studied, 10 with intractable pain (score >5 on a 0-to-9 self-reporting pain scale) persisting for more than 6 months after enucleation (for various reasons) and 10 without pain (score <4) at least 6 months after enucleation. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with dynamic color mapping (MRI-DCM) was used to quantify the motion of the optic nerve in millimeters per degree of gaze, 2 to 3 mm behind the implant. Histopathologic study of biopsy specimens was used to verify imaging findings. RESULTS: The optic nerve was attached to the implant in almost all (19/20) patients. On average, the motion was significantly less in patients with persistent intractable pain (0.04 mm/deg) than in patients without pain (0.08 mm/deg; normal orbit, 0.13 mm/deg). A biopsy specimen was available in 5 of 10 patients with persistent pain, and in 4 of those 5, microscopic neuroma was found close to the optic nerve-implant junction. CONCLUSIONS: In the enucleated orbit, the optic nerve is usually attached to the implant and soft tissue motion is decreased. In patients who have persistent pain after enucleation, motion is decreased even more, and a high percentage of microscopic amputation neuromas are found. Increased stiffness of orbital soft tissue and optic nerve attachment after enucleation are detectable using MRI-DCM, and may play a role in susceptible patients in the development of microscopic amputation neuroma and pain. (+info)
Brain tumors in children with neurofibromatosis: additional neuropsychological morbidity?
Neurofibromatosis type 1 is a common autosomal dominant genetic disorder associated with numerous physical anomalies and an increased incidence of neuropsychological impairment. Tumors of the CNS occur in approximately 15% of children with neurofibromatosis, presenting additional risk for cognitive impairment. This study examines the impact of an additional diagnosis of brain tumor on the cognitive profile of children with neurofibromatosis. A comprehensive battery of neuropsychological tests was administered to 149 children with neurofibromatosis. Thirty-six of these children had a codiagnosis of brain tumor. A subset of 36 children with neurofibromatosis alone was matched with the group of children diagnosed with neurofibromatosis and brain tumor. Although mean scores of the neurofibromatosis plus brain tumor group were, in general, lower than those of the neurofibromatosis alone group, these differences were not statistically significant. Children in the neurofibromatosis plus brain tumor group who received cranial irradiation (n = 9) demonstrated weaker academic abilities than did children with brain tumor who had not received that treatment. These results suggest that neurofibromatosis is associated with impairments in cognitive functioning, but the severity of the problems is not significantly exacerbated by the codiagnosis of a brain tumor unless treatment includes cranial irradiation. (+info)
Necrotizing neurosarcoidosis masquerading as a left optic nerve meningioma: case report.
Isolated neurosarcoidosis involving the optic nerve meninges is extremely rare and is often indistinguishable from a meningioma in its anatomic site and MR imaging presentation. Characteristic findings include enhanced perineural encasement and thickening of the affected optic nerve on contrast-enhanced T1-weighted cranial MR imaging studies. We present the case report of a patient with isolated necrotizing neurosarcoidosis of the left optic nerve, with clinical and MR imaging findings strongly suggestive of a preoperative diagnosis of a meningioma. (+info)
Loss of heterozygosity for the NF2 gene in retinal and optic nerve lesions of patients with neurofibromatosis 2.
Individuals affected with the neurofibromatosis 2 (NF2) cancer predisposition syndrome develop specific ocular lesions. To determine whether these lesions result from altered NF2 gene expression, microdissection and PCR were used to investigate 40 ocular lesions from seven eyes of four NF2 patients for LOH, with markers that flank the NF2 gene on chromosome 22q. NF2 protein (merlin) expression was also evaluated in these lesions, using immunohistochemistry. Retinal hamartoma was observed in all seven eyes, including one with combined pigment epithelial and retinal hamartoma (CPERH). Retinal tufts were present in four eyes (three patients), retinal dysplasia in two eyes (two patients), optic nerve neurofibroma in one eye, iris naevoid hyperplasia in two eyes (two patients) and pseudophakia in all eyes. Markers were informative in three patients (six eyes from three unrelated families). One patient was non-informative due to prolonged decalcification. All retinal and optic nerve, but not iris lesions, demonstrated consistent LOH for the NF2 gene. Merlin was not expressed in the retina, optic nerve, or iris lesions. These results suggest that inactivation of the NF2 gene is associated with the formation of a variety of retinal and optic nerve lesions in NF2 patients. (+info)
Stereotactic fractionated irradiation of optic nerve sheath meningioma: a new treatment alternative.
BACKGROUND: Primary optic nerve sheath meningioma (ONSM) is a rare but almost invariably blinding tumour when its natural history is observed in a "wait and see" strategy. Surgery has hitherto only been advocated in case of progressive disease involving intracranial structures, as it leads to iatrogenic blindness in the overwhelming majority of cases. Therefore, treatment options bearing lesser risk of functional deterioration are highly desirable, both in cases of intracranial involvement as well as during earlier phases of the disease which are currently generally left untreated. The authors report the outcome of the largest series of patients to date treated by stereotactic fractionated irradiation as a new treatment approach in ONSM at all stages. METHODS: 15 patients (16 nerves) underwent stereotactic fractionated conformal irradiation with a total dose of 54 Gy, using standard fractionation. Main outcome parameters included visual acuity and visual field, as well as three dimensional remission as documented by imaging. RESULTS: Tumour control was confirmed in all 15 patients undergoing stereotactic fractionated conformal irradiation (mean follow up 37 (range 12-71) months). No patient developed functional deterioration during or after treatment. Moreover, visual acuity improved by more than two lines in one patient and the visual field improved in six cases. Visual outcome in the other patients remained unchanged. There were no significant side effects of radiation therapy. CONCLUSION: These data provide convincing evidence that stereotactic fractionated conformal irradiation is an effective treatment option for primary ONSM with minimal treatment related morbidity. It should therefore be considered as therapeutic option both in early stage ONSM where surgery cannot be justified as well as in later stages, where surgery is so far considered the first line approach. (+info)