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May 1984

Postvaricella Encephalitis

Author Affiliations

From the Pediatric Neurology Unit, Harvard Medical School (Dr Bauman) and the Pediatric Neurology Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital (Drs Bauman and Bergman), Boston.

Arch Neurol. 1984;41(5):556-558. doi:10.1001/archneur.1984.04050170106027

• A 9-year-old boy with varicella had an encephalitis with an unusually long and fluctuating course. Improvement in his deteriorating clinical condition coincided with the initiation of corticotropin therapy and the child recovered completely. Computed tomographic scan of the brain initially showed extensive areas of low absorption in white matter compatible with demyelination, which later resolved. These findings suggest that the pathologic changes of postvaricella encephalitis may be associated with a reversible demyelinative process.

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