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Rinsho Shinkeigaku. 2005 May;45(5):346-50.

[A case of brachial amyotrophic diplegia accompanied with Sjögren's syndrome presenting good response to immunotherapies in the early course of the disease].

[Article in Japanese]

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Neurological Institute, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University.


A 74-year-old woman suffered from progressive muscle atrophy and weakness of her arms since she was seventy two years old. Before referral to our department, she was diagnosed as having cervical spondylotic myeloradiculopathy and received spinal fusion. Though spinal decompression was successful, muscle weakness of her upper limbs were progressive even after the surgery. On admission, neurological examinations revealed marked atrophy and weakness of her bilateral upper limbs with absent deep tendon reflexes showing man-in-the-barrel syndrome. Her lower extremities had normal muscle strength, but fasciculations were seen in her all four limbs. Electrophysiologically, motor nerve conduction velocity was almost normal but the amplitude was remarkably decreased, conduction block was not detected, and electromyography showed neurogenic patterns on her all extremities. Spinal progressive musclar atrophy (SPMA) accompanied with Sjögren's syndrome was the likely diagnosis. Because 50 kDa anti-neuronal antibodies were found in her serum, we assumed that anterior horn cells were impaired by an autoimmune mechanism. Thus we treated her with corticosteroid pulse therapy, plasma exchange (PE) and intravenous immunoglobulin infusion therapy (IVIG). Although steroid pulse therapy only had a minimal effect, PE and IVIG promoted a remarkable improvement on her weakness, and the effect lasted for about three months. This is the first case of SPMA with Sjögren's syndrome which showed good response to PE and IVIG in the early course of the disease. We considered that some SPMA-like motor neuron syndrome accompanied with autoimmune features may require immunomodulating therapies.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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