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COVID-19 Related Acute Hemorrhagic Necrotizing Encephalitis: A Report of Two Cases and Literature Review.
Mullaguri, Naresh; Sivakumar, Sanjeev; Battineni, Anusha; Anand, Samyuktha; Vanderwerf, Joshua.
  • Mullaguri N; Medicine/Neurological Intensive Care, Prisma Health Greenville Memorial Hospital, Greenville, USA.
  • Sivakumar S; Medicine/Neurology, University of South Carolina, Greenville, USA.
  • Battineni A; Medicine/Neurological Intensive Care, Prisma Health Greenville Memorial Hospital, Greenville, USA.
  • Anand S; Medicine/Neurology, University of South Carolina, Greenville, USA.
  • Vanderwerf J; Neurology, Prisma Health Greenville Memorial Hospital, Greenville, USA.
Cureus ; 13(4): e14236, 2021 Apr 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1200346
ABSTRACT
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), a novel coronavirus, has proven neurotropism and causes a multitude of neurologic manifestations. Acute hemorrhagic necrotizing encephalitis (AHNE), though rare, can be seen in patients with severe infection and is associated with devastating neurologic outcomes. The true prevalence of this syndrome is unknown due to underrecognition, difficulty in timely acquisition of neuroimaging, and high mortality in this subset of patients escaping detection. It is a distinct clinicoradiological syndrome, with patients suffering from rapidly worsening encephalopathy and coma within the first two weeks of severe illness and hemorrhagic necrotizing parenchymal changes on neuroimaging. The pathophysiology of this syndrome is unclear but hypothesized to occur due to cytokine storm, blood-brain-barrier dysfunction, and direct viral-mediated endotheliopathy. Diagnosis requires a high index of suspicion in patients who have unexplained persistent severe encephalopathy associated with COVID-19 infection. Most patients have elevated systemic inflammatory markers and severe lung disease with hypoxic respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation. MRI is the imaging modality of choice, with a distinct neuroimaging pattern. CSF (cerebrospinal fluid) studies have a low yield for viral particle detection with currently available testing. While long-term outcomes are unclear, early immunomodulatory treatment with intravenous immunoglobulin, plasma exchange, and steroids may portend a favorable outcome. We discuss two cases of COVID-19 related AHNE and also include a pertinent literature search of similar cases in PubMed to consolidate the AHNE clinical syndrome, neuroimaging characteristics, management strategies, and reported short-term prognosis.
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Full text: Available Collection: International databases Database: MEDLINE Document Type: Article Type of study: Case report / Prognostic study / Risk factors Language: English Journal: Cureus Clinical aspect: Prognosis Year: 2021

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Full text: Available Collection: International databases Database: MEDLINE Document Type: Article Type of study: Case report / Prognostic study / Risk factors Language: English Journal: Cureus Clinical aspect: Prognosis Year: 2021
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