Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy: Clinical and radiographic features

Lauren B. Krupp, Richard B. Lipton, Michael L. Swerdlow, Norman E. Leeds, Jose Llena

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

153 Scopus citations


Between April 1982 and March 1984 7 pathologically confirmed cases of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) were diagnosed at our institution. Only 1 case had been seen in the preceding twenty years. Four patients had acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). The others had chronic lymphocytic leukemia, Hodgkin's lymphoma and systemic lupus erythematosus. All patients presented with progressive neurological deficits. In most, the initial computed tomographic (CT) scan was disproportionately less abnormal than the clinical findings. In 5 patients the first CT scan revealed hypodensities of the cerebral white matter which lacked mass effect and did not enhance with contrast agent. The lesions were observed to enlarge progressively on CT scans but often lagged behind the rate ofcllinical evolution. Although 3 patients were treated with cytosine arabinoside, none improved. PML had similiar clinical, radiographic, and pathological features in the AIDS and non‐AIDs patients. Of 79 AIDS paatients cared for at our institution between December 1979 and December 1983, 3.8% had PML. PML should be suspected in AIDS patients in the presence of the characteristic CT features, especially when CT‐clinical dissociation occurs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)344-349
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Neurology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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