Send to

Choose Destination
Korean J Pediatr. 2018 Feb;61(2):64-67. doi: 10.3345/kjp.2018.61.2.64. Epub 2018 Feb 28.

Mild encephalopathy with a reversible splenial lesion in a girl with acute pyelonephritis.

Yeom JS1,2, Koo CM3, Park JS1,2, Seo JH1,2, Park ES1,2, Lim JY1,2, Woo HO1,2, Youn HS1,2.

Author information

Department of Pediatrics, Gyeongsang National University School of Medicine, Jinju, Korea.
Gyeongsang Institute of Health Science, Jinju, Korea.
Department of Pediatrics, Changwon Gyeongsang National University Hospital, Changwon, Korea.


We report the case of a 12-year-old girl who had mild encephalopathy with a reversible splenial lesion (MERS) associated with acutepyelonephritis caused by Escherichia coli. The patient was admitted with a high fever, and she was diagnosed with acute pyelonephritis based on pyuria and the results of urine culture, which detected cefotaxime-sensitive E. coli. Although intravenous cefotaxime and tobramycin were administered, her fever persisted and her C-reactive protein level increased to 307 mg/L. On day 3 of admission, she demonstrated abnormal neuropsychiatric symptoms, such as delirium, ataxia, and word salad. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain performed on day 4 showed marked hyperintensities in the bilateral corpus callosum and deep white matter on diffusion-weighted images, with corresponding diffusion restriction on apparent diffusion coefficient mapping. No abnormalities or pathogens were detected in the cerebrospinal fluid; however, lipopolysaccharides (LPS, endotoxin) were detected in plasma (41.6 pg/mL), associated with acute neurological deterioration. Her clinical condition gradually improved, and no neurological abnormalities were observed on day 6. Follow-up brain MRI performed 2 weeks later showed near-disappearance of the previously noted hyperintense lesions. In this patient, we first proved endotoxemia in a setting of MERS. The release of LPS following antibiotic administration might be related to the development of MERS in this patient. The possibility of MERS should be considered in patients who present with acute pyelonephritis and demonstrate delirious behavior.


Corpus callosum; Encephalopathy; Escherichia coli; Pyelonephritis; White matter

Conflict of interest statement

Conflicts of interest: No potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported.

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Publishing M2Community Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center