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FLAIR and magnetization transfer imaging of patients with post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome.

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine patterns of abnormalities on cerebral MRI that may characterize subgroups of patients with post-treatment
Lyme disease syndrome (PTLDS) and to help identify pathomechanisms of
disease.

METHODS:

The authors analyzed the distribution of cerebral lesions in a cohort of 27 patients with PTLDS. A subgroup of eight patients with PTLDS was further studied using whole-brain magnetization transfer ratio measures to identify abnormalities not seen on T2-weighted images.

RESULTS:

Four patients had focal neurologic deficits, relapsing-remitting
disease, and lesions in a distribution typical of MS. Twenty-three patients presented with nonfocal symptoms such as fatigue, subjective memory deficits, and mood disturbance. Twelve of these patients had normal MRI, including the more sensitive fluid-attenuated inversion recovery sequence, 10 had primarily punctate and subcortical lesions, and one patient had multiple periventricular lesions.

CONCLUSIONS:

In a portion of patients with post-treatment
Lyme disease syndrome, white-matter hyperintensities tend to occur in subcortical arteriolar watershed areas and are not specific. Magnetization transfer ratio analysis did not provide evidence for structural abnormalities of the brain parenchyma in patients with nonfocal
disease.

Neurology. 2001 Dec 11;57(11):1980-5.

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