A case of atopic myelitis of acute onset with atypical distribution of spinal cord lesions

Kohji Tanaka, Mamoru Shibata, Yuko Nozawa, Tomoko Komagamine, Yoko Morita, Shintaro Gomi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A 23-year-old woman was admitted to our department because of gait disturbance, sensory impairment in the lower limbs, and sphincter disturbance, all of which had been developing within 24 hours before admission. Neurological examination disclosed symmetric muscle weakness, sensory impairment, and diminished tendon reflexes in the lower limbs. The urinary bladder was hypoactive, and the anal tone was reduced. The spinal cord MRI performed on the day of admission revealed swelling of the epiconus. The CSF findings were not remarkable, except for the elevated levels of IgE (8 IU/ml) and MBP (7.8 ng/ml). Besides, there was a marked increase in the serum mite-specific IgE titers. Collectively, we made a diagnosis of atopic myelitis. She was treated with steroid pulse therapy and plasma exchange, which led to a significant amelioration of her neurological manifestations. The repeat MRI carried out on the 21st day of her admission displayed several foci scattered in the lumbar and sacral spinal cord segments, which exhibited high intensity signals on the T2-weighted images. The values of IgE and albumin in the CSF and serum raised the possibility of intrathecal IgE synthesis. We measured her CSF IgE levels at several time points during admission. The temporal profile of her CSF IgE levels was not correlated with that of her neurological disabilities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)130-134
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Neurology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Feb


  • Atopic myelitis
  • Epiconus
  • IgE
  • Mast cell
  • Transverse myelitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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