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March 1966

Central Pontine Myelinolysis in a Child With Leukemia

Author Affiliations

From the departments of neuropathology, neurology, and pathology, Harvard Medical School, the Charles S. Kubik Laboratory for Neuropathology of the James Homer Wright Pathology Laboratories, and the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Memorial Laboratories, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston.

Arch Neurol. 1966;14(3):273-280. doi:10.1001/archneur.1966.00470090045006

THIRTY-NINE case studies of patients with central pontine myelinolysis have appeared in the literature1-15 since the lesion was first recognized as an unusual demyelinative process in the basis pontis by Adams et al in 1959.1 However, the disease remains a great rarity in children; a careful search of the literature has revealed only three other instances of the disease in the early years of life.4,6,15 In this report a fourth case in a child is presented, and the association of central-nervous-system lesion with acute leukemia is recorded for the first time. In the past etiological discussions have been centered on nutritional factors related to alcoholism in adults, whereas in children malnutrition, dehydration, and electrolyte imbalance have been considered. Therefore, the good state of nutrition preserved throughout the illness in the present case is noteworthy. Because of this fact, wider contributory or definitive etiological factors have