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Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2017 Oct 20;13:2653-2660. doi: 10.2147/NDT.S147360. eCollection 2017.

Complexity and wide range of neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders: more than typical manifestations.

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Department of Neurology and Neuroscience Center, The First Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, China.
Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and Society, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.


Neuromyelitis optica (NMO), considered to be mediated by autoantibodies, often cause severely disabling disorders of the central nervous system, and predominantly cause optic nerve damage and longitudinally extensive transverse myelitis. Remarkable progress has been made in deciphering NMO pathogenesis during the past decade. In 2015, the International Panel for NMO Diagnosis proposed the unifying term "NMO spectrum disorders" (NMOSD) and the updated NMOSD criteria reflects a wide range of disease and maintains reasonable specificity. Moreover, cumulative findings have indicated that NMOSD are frequently associated with multiple autoimmune diseases, thereby presenting complex clinical symptoms that make this disease more difficult to recognize. Notably, most neurologists do not heed these symptoms or comorbid conditions in patients with NMOSD. Whereas previous reviews have focused on pathogenesis, treatment, and prognosis in NMOSD, we summarize the present knowledge with particular emphasis on atypical manifestations and autoimmune comorbidities in patients with NMOSD. Furthermore, we emphasized the identification of these atypical characteristics to enable a broader and better understanding of NMOSD, and improve early accurate diagnosis and therapeutic decision making.


anti-aquaporin-4 antibody; atypical manifestations; comorbid conditions; neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders

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Disclosure The authors report no conflicts of interest in this work.

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