October 1997

Simple Partial Status Epilepticus and Antiglycolipid IgM Antibodies: Possible Epilepsy of Autoimmune Origin

Author Affiliations

Department of Neurology Hopital Laënnec CHU de Nantes, BP 1005 44035 Nantes Cedex 01, France
Lyon, France

Arch Neurol. 1997;54(10):1194-1196. doi:10.1001/archneur.1997.00550220010003

Partial motor status epilepticus (PMSE) is characterized by motor seizures that "are so frequently repeated or so prolonged as to create a fixed and lasting condition."1 These epilepsies are associated with different types of diseases, including infectious, vascular, neoplastic, demyelinating, and traumatic ones as well as those of metabolic origin.2 We report a case of simple PMSE characterized by alternating or bilateral tonic contraction preceded by brief hallucinatory and forced-thinking episodes, which revealed Waldenström macroglobulinemia (WM). Although this lymphoproliferative disorder frequently involves the nervous system,3,4 this is apparently the first report of an association with PMSE and of complete recovery after chemotherapy. Moreover, the presence of antiglycolipid antibodies that have been reported to be potentially epileptogenic in rats5 and humans6 suggested that an autoimmune mechanism was responsible for status epilepticus occurrence.

A 64-year-old, right-handed man with an unremarkable medical history was first evaluated in January

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