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Neurology. 1997 Jan;48(1):23-8.

Hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy IIB: clinical and electrodiagnostic characteristics.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA.


Axonal forms of autosomal dominant hereditary motor and sensory neuropathies (HMSNs) represent a heterogeneous group of disorders based on genetic linkage studies. We recently identified one large family with axonal HMSN exhibiting linkage to chromosome 3q, designated HMSN IIB, and report here the clinical and electrodiagnostic features. We clinically evaluated 10 individuals with HMSN IIB and performed detailed electrophysiologic studies in 5 of these patients. HMSN IIB is characterized clinically by the presence of distal symmetric motor weakness and prominent sensory loss affecting the lower extremities with preserved ankle reflexes. Symptomatic age at onset is in the second or early third decade of life. Six patients with HMSN IIB had distal trophic ulcerations in the feet, leading to eventual toe amputations in four cases. Electrodiagnostic studies confirmed a distal sensorimotor axonopathy involving the lower limbs with normal motor conduction velocities. Tibial H-reflexes were preserved in HMSN IIB, despite the uniform loss of sural nerve potentials. Overall, individuals with HMSN IIB demonstrated a consistent clinical and electrodiagnostic phenotype that had no overlap with genetically unaffected family members. The identification of specific clinical and electrodiagnostic features of HMSN IIB may prove useful in the diagnosis and differentiation between various subtypes of HMSN II.

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