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April 1980

Pathogenesis of Varicella-Zoster Angiitis in the CNS

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Medicine (Dr Linnemann) and Pathology (Dr Alvira), University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.

Arch Neurol. 1980;37(4):239-240. doi:10.1001/archneur.1980.00500530077013

• A 20-year-old man with Hodgkin's disease experienced ophthalmic zoster with dissemination and CNS involvement. At autopsy, he was found to have granulomatous angiitis involving the basilar artery, and electron microscopy revealed virus-like particles in the outer layers of the vessel walls, but not the endothelium. This suggests that granulomatous angiitis of the CNS in varicella-zoster infections results from direct viral invasion of blood vessels, perhaps by contiguous spread from cranial nerves.

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