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1.
Acta Biomed ; 93(S1): e20222140, 2022 Jun 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2002823

ABSTRACT

Different neurological complications associated with the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) infection have been widely documented. Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) is a rare immune-mediated demyelinating disorder, described within the spectrum of neurological manifestations of COVID-19. Herein, we describe a case of adult-ADEM presenting with diplopia and slowly progressive ataxia developed one month after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed acute multifocal demyelinating lesions throughout the brain. Other possible etiologies have been ruled out. After treatment with high-dose steroids, we observed a progressive clinical and radiological improvement. A 4-months follow-up showed complete clinical recovery. Although extremely rare, ADEM could be associated to SARS-CoV-2 infection and should be considered in the differential diagnosis. Early recognition of this COVID-19 neurological complication, even in the absence of pulmonary involvement, is important to start a prompt immune-modulatory treatment and, consequently, ensure a good outcome.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Encephalomyelitis, Acute Disseminated , Nervous System Diseases , Adult , Brain/pathology , COVID-19/complications , Encephalomyelitis, Acute Disseminated/complications , Encephalomyelitis, Acute Disseminated/diagnosis , Humans , Nervous System Diseases/complications , SARS-CoV-2
2.
Neuroimmunology Reports ; : 100127, 2022.
Article in English | ScienceDirect | ID: covidwho-1996453

ABSTRACT

Objective To describe ischemic stroke due to floating thrombus of ascending aorta occurring as acute and subacute complication of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Material and Methods consecutive identification in clinical practice of ischemic strokes secondary to aortic arch thrombosis and history of acute or recent Covid-19 infection. Results two patients had ischemic stroke with evidence of aortic arch thrombosis. The first case had concomitant acute Covid-19 infection, the second had recent Covid-19 infection. Both patients underwent intravenous thrombolysis, and subsequent anticoagulation. One patient died due to cerebral hemorrhage. Discussion and Conclusions aortic arch thrombosis can be an incidental finding in acute ischemic stroke in patients with concomitant and recent COVID-19 disease. However, the infection may lead to thrombosis in non-atherosclerotic vessels and to cerebral embolism. Our findings support active radiological search for aortic thrombosis during acute stroke in patients with acute or recent COVID-19 disease.

3.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 7340, 2022 05 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1947414

ABSTRACT

Gustatory (GD) and olfactory (OD) dysfunctions are the most frequent neurological manifestations of COVID-19. We used mental imagery as an experimental psychological paradigm to access olfactory and gustatory brain representations in 80 Italian COVID-19 adult patients (68.75% reported both OD and GD). COVID-19 patients with OD + GD have a significantly and selectively decreased vividness of odor and taste imagery, indicating that COVID-19 has an effect on their chemosensory mental representations. OD + GD length and type influenced the status of mental chemosensory representations. OD + GD were become all COVID-19 negative at the time of testing. Data suggest that patients are not explicitly aware of long-term altered chemosensory processing. However, differences emerge when their chemosensory function is implicitly assessed using self-ratings. Among patients developing OD + GD, self-ratings of chemosensory function (taste, flavor) were significantly lower as compared to those who did not. At the level of mental representation, such differences can be further detected, in terms of a reduced ability to mentally activate an odor or taste mental image. Our study shows that COVID-19 infection not only frequently causes hyposmia and dysgeusia, but that may also alter the mental representations responsible for olfactory and gustatory perception.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Adult , COVID-19/complications , Humans , Olfaction Disorders/etiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Smell , Taste Disorders/etiology
5.
Prion ; 16(1): 78-83, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1915463

ABSTRACT

Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is a rare, fatal disease presenting with rapidly progressive neurological deficits caused by the accumulation of a misfolded form (PrPSc) of prion protein (PrPc). Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a primarily respiratory syndrome caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2); many diverse neurological complications have been observed after COVID-19. We describe a young patient developing CJD two months after mild COVID-19. Presenting symptoms were visuospatial deficits and ataxia, evolving into a bedridden state with preserved consciousness and diffuse myoclonus. Diagnostic work-up was suggestive of CJD. The early age of onset and the short interval between respiratory and neurological symptoms might suggest a causal relationship: a COVID-19-related neuroinflammatory state may have induced the misfolding and subsequent aggregation of PrPSc. The present case emphasizes the link between neuroinflammation and protein misfolding. Further studies are needed to establish the role of SARS-CoV-2 as an initiator of neurodegeneration.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Creutzfeldt-Jakob Syndrome , Prions , COVID-19/complications , Creutzfeldt-Jakob Syndrome/metabolism , Humans , Prion Proteins , Prions/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Acta Biomed ; 93(S1): e2022107, 2022 Jun 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1879756

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection is associated with an increased risk of thrombotic events, especially during severe forms of disease. Here we describe the clinical history of a patient with a mild form of Covid-19 infection presenting with multiple cerebral ischemic lesions that evolved in an atypical way.


Subject(s)
Antiphospholipid Syndrome , COVID-19 , Ischemic Stroke , Nervous System Diseases , Antiphospholipid Syndrome/complications , Antiphospholipid Syndrome/diagnosis , COVID-19/complications , Humans , Ischemic Stroke/etiology , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Front Neurol ; 13: 834469, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1753393

ABSTRACT

Background: Acute ischemic stroke (AIS) is a possible complication of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection. Although peculiar clinical features and underlying specific mechanisms of thrombogenesis have been suggested so far, there is no consensus on the appropriate vascular preventive drug regimen in patients with COVID-19. Aim and Methods: From a larger clinical series of consecutive acute ischemic strokes related to COVID-19 admitted to three cerebrovascular units in Northern Italy, herein, we describe the clinical features of a subgroup of patients in whom stroke occurred despite therapeutic anticoagulation. Results: A total of seventeen/80 AIS related to COVID-19 (21.2%) occurred in anticoagulated patients. Although no blood level was available for Direct Oral AntiCoagulant, the drug dosage was appropriate according to guidelines. Their National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) at admission was 12.0 (SD = 7.4) and 58.8% of them had evidence of large vessel occlusion. The case fatality rate was as high as 64.7%. Discussion and Conclusions: The occurrence of an anticoagulation failure seems to be increased in the setting of COVID-19 infection, with worse clinical outcomes if compared to non-COVID-19 related ischemic strokes. We discuss the diagnostic and therapeutic implications of such evidence, suggesting that some arterial thrombotic complications might be either resistant to or independent of the anticoagulation effect.

8.
Neuroradiology ; 64(7): 1367-1372, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1626879

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: Intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) is an uncommon but deadly event in patients with COVID-19 and its imaging features remain poorly characterized. We aimed to describe the clinical and imaging features of COVID-19-associated ICH. METHODS: Multicenter, retrospective, case-control analysis comparing ICH in COVID-19 patients (COV19 +) versus controls without COVID-19 (COV19 -). Clinical presentation, laboratory markers, and severity of COVID-19 disease were recorded. Non-contrast computed tomography (NCCT) markers (intrahematoma hypodensity, heterogeneous density, blend sign, irregular shape fluid level), ICH location, and hematoma volume (ABC/2 method) were analyzed. The outcome of interest was ultraearly hematoma growth (uHG) (defined as NCCT baseline ICH volume/onset-to-imaging time), whose predictors were explored with multivariable linear regression. RESULTS: A total of 33 COV19 + patients and 321 COV19 - controls with ICH were included. Demographic characteristics and vascular risk factors were similar in the two groups. Multifocal ICH and NCCT markers were significantly more common in the COV19 + population. uHG was significantly higher among COV19 + patients (median 6.2 mL/h vs 3.1 mL/h, p = 0.027), and this finding remained significant after adjustment for confounding factors (systolic blood pressure, antiplatelet and anticoagulant therapy), in linear regression (B(SE) = 0.31 (0.11), p = 0.005). This association remained consistent also after the exclusion of patients under anticoagulant treatment (B(SE) = 0.29 (0.13), p = 0.026). CONCLUSIONS: ICH in COV19 + patients has distinct NCCT imaging features and a higher speed of bleeding. This association is not mediated by antithrombotic therapy and deserves further research to characterize the underlying biological mechanisms.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Anticoagulants , Biomarkers , COVID-19/complications , Cerebral Hemorrhage/complications , Cerebral Hemorrhage/diagnostic imaging , Hematoma/diagnostic imaging , Humans , Retrospective Studies
10.
Infect Dis Rep ; 14(1): 20-25, 2022 Jan 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1613753

ABSTRACT

There is limited information regarding the severity of COVID-19 in immunocompromized patients. We conducted a retrospective cohort study considering the period from 1 March 2020 to 31 December 2020 to determine whether previously existing lymphopenia increases the risk of hospitalization and death after SARS-CoV-2 infection in the general population. The laboratory and hospital discharge databases of the Azienda Sanitaria Universitaria Friuli Centrale were used, and 5415 subjects infected with SARS-CoV-2 and with at least one recent absolute lymphocyte count determination before SARS-CoV-2 positivity were included. In total, 817 (15.1%) patients had severe COVID-19. Patients developing severe COVID-19 were more frequently males (44.9% of the severe COVID-19 group vs. 41.5% in the non-severe COVID-19 group; p < 0.0001) and were older (73.2 ± 13.8 vs. 58.4 ± 20.3 years; p < 0.0001). Furthermore, 29.9% of the lymphopenic patients developed severe COVID-19 vs. 14.5% of the non-lymphopenic patients (p < 0.0001). In a logistic regression model, female sex remained a protective factor (OR = 0.514, 95%CI 0.438-0.602, p < 0.0001), while age and lymphopenia remained risk factors for severe COVID-19 (OR = 1.047, 95%CI 1.042-1.053, p < 0.0001 for each additional year of age; OR = 1.715, 95%CI 1.239-2.347, p = 0.0011 for lymphopenia). This provides further information to stratify the risk of COVID-19 severity, which may be an important element in the management of immunosuppressive therapies.

11.
Acta Biomed ; 92(5): e2021208, 2021 11 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1504536

ABSTRACT

Respiratory involvement is the most common clinical manifestation of COVID-19, but neurological symptoms and complications are increasingly being recognized. Seizures and status epilepticus (SE) have been described as possible consequences of hypoxia and metabolic derangements during SARS-CoV-2 infection, direct viral invasion of the central nervous system, or as para or post-infectious complications. Single episodes of SE have been described, occurring during the acute phase of COVID-19 or once the patients have been recovered. Herein, we present the case of a patient with a positive serology test for SARS-CoV-2 (IgG+, IgM-) and recurrent SE occurring within 36 days. Diagnostic work-up ruled out other known causes of SE. A post-COVID-19 infectious inflammatory/immune response is hypothesized as the possible trigger of SE.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Status Epilepticus , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Serologic Tests , Status Epilepticus/diagnosis , Status Epilepticus/etiology
14.
Neurol Sci ; 43(3): 2015-2020, 2022 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1358105

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Neurological manifestations of COVID-19 infection are well recognized. Seizures and status epilepticus (SE) have been reported as possible manifestations and/or complications of SARS-CoV-2 infection at different disease stages, but few data are known about the type, severity, treatment response, and recurrence. METHODS: Single-center retrospective case series. RESULTS: This case series describes four COVID-19-positive patients admitted to an Italian University Hospital, who developed status epilepticus during the active phase of disease, independently from the severity of respiratory symptoms. Two of them presented a relapse after resolution of the acute viral infection, a feature that has not been previously reported. CONCLUSIONS: Although a possible association between SE and COVID-19 has been reported, the exact etiopathogenetic mechanism remains still not understood. Our series adds new insights to shed further light on this controversial issue.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Status Epilepticus , Humans , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Seizures/diagnosis , Status Epilepticus/diagnosis , Status Epilepticus/etiology
15.
Clin Neurol Neurosurg ; 208: 106839, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1322036

ABSTRACT

Several central and peripheral nervous system complications associated with the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) infection have been recently described. An effective mass vaccination program is necessary to effectively reduce infection spread and, consequently, limit long-term sequelae, including those affecting the nervous system. Nevertheless, as more patients gain access to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines, it is important to report potential adverse events. Herein, we report a patient with previous history of post-infectious rhombencephalitis who developed an acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) two weeks after being vaccinated for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Myelitis, Transverse/etiology , Female , Humans , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Neurol Clin Pract ; 11(2): e92-e96, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1177748

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the prevalence of hyposmia and dysgeusia in patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection and their temporal relationship with the onset of other symptoms. METHODS: We performed a retrospective analysis of patients admitted during the month of March 2020 to the nonintensive COVID unit of Udine University Hospital on the basis of a positive swab test and/or of clinical-radiologic signs of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Patients were interviewed with a standardized questionnaire. Clinical and laboratory data were collected. Data were analyzed with descriptive statistics, and results expressed as point estimates and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). RESULTS: Of 141 patients admitted, 93 were interviewed. Hyposmia and dysgeusia were present in 58 cases (62.4%). In 22.4% of them, olfactory and gustatory impairment clearly preceded systemic symptoms. The presence of active smoking was very limited in both groups: 8.6% in hyposmic vs 2.9% in normosmic patients (odds ratio 3.2; 95% CI 0.3-28.6). Moreover, total leukocytes and neutrophils count were respectively 23% (effect estimate 1.23; 95% CI 1.06-1.42) and 29% (effect estimate 1.29; 95% CI 1.07-1.54) lower in the hyposmic cohort. No difference was found for other inflammatory biomarkers. CONCLUSIONS: Hyposmia and dysgeusia are common in SARS-CoV-2 infection and can precede systemic symptoms. They should be actively searched and prompt close monitoring and isolation until infection is confirmed or disproven. The lower number of total leukocytes and neutrophils in hyposmic patients might indicate an early-phase virus-induced cytopenia.

19.
Neurol Sci ; 42(6): 2173-2178, 2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1146213

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To report clinical and electroneuromyographic (ENMG) characteristics of patients affected by severe COVID-19 infection, evaluated for muscular weakness. MATERIALS AND METHODS: ENMGs performed for evaluation of diffuse weakness in patients who could not be discharged from semi-intensive care COVID unit because of difficulties in ventilation weaning were reviewed. Patients with severe COVID-19 infection who had undergone endotracheal intubation and able to co-operate were considered. ENMG protocol was focused on neurophysiological items that excluded or confirmed critical illness polyneuropathy (CIP), myopathy (CIM), or polyneuromyopathy (CIPM). Standardized clinical evaluation was performed using Medical Research Council (MRC) sum score. RESULTS: Eight patients were included in the study. All presented known risk factors for intensive care unit-acquired weakness (ICU-AW), and none of them had history of underlying neuromuscular disorders. ENMG findings were normal in two patients, while only two patients had an altered MRC sum score (< 48). Neuromuscular involvement was diagnosed in 6/8 patients (75%): 2 had CIP, 1 had possible CIM, 1 had CIPM, while 1 patient, with clinically evident weakness but equivocal ENMG findings, was classified as ICU-AW. Finally, 1 patient was diagnosed with acute demyelinating neuropathy. Patients with neuromuscular involvement were those with longer intubation duration and higher levels of IL-6 at admission. CONCLUSION: Neuromuscular complications are frequent in severe COVID-19 and cannot be excluded by MRC sum scores above 48. Standardized ENMG is helpful in guiding diagnosis when clinical evaluation is not reliable or possible. Elevated IL-6 at admission may be a predictor biomarker of ICU-AW in COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Muscular Diseases , Polyneuropathies , Critical Illness , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Muscle Weakness/diagnosis , Muscle Weakness/etiology , Muscular Diseases/complications , Muscular Diseases/diagnosis , Polyneuropathies/complications , Polyneuropathies/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2
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