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Neuropediatrics. 2010 Aug;41(2):66-8. doi: 10.1055/s-0030-1255073. Epub 2010 Aug 26.

Unusual neuroimaging in a young boy with cerebral X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Padua, Padova, Italy.


We describe the case of a 7-year-old boy with cerebral X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy presenting with neurobehavioral symptoms. Attention deficit with hyperactive behavior was followed by progressive memory retrieval deficits and difficulty in writing. A detailed review of the clinical history, clinical examination and contrast-enhanced brain nuclear magnetic resonance imaging disclosed indeed an atypical cerebral form of X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy with diffuse anterior and posterior white matter involvement with a typical rim of contrast enhancement. A severe clinical deterioration occurred despite dietary treatment and hormonal replacement therapy. These rare but severe forms of atypical cerebral X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy can more often mimic attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and should, therefore, be considered in young males with progressive neurobehavioral symptoms, particularly when possibly related to frontal white matter involvement. An accurate clinical history and examination should determine whenever a contrast-enhanced head MRI should be indicated.

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