Leukoencephalopathy as a rare complication of hepatitis C infection

R. Buccoliero, S. Gambelli, F. Sicurelli, A. Malandrini, S. Palmeri, M. De Santis, M. L. Stromillo, N. De Stefano, A. Sperduto, S. A. Musumeci, A. Federico

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We report the case of a 64-year-old female patient with hepatitis C infection (HCV), who developed Sjögren's disease and sensory peripheral neuropathy. Clinical conditions worsened over three years with central nervous system involvement characterised by transient third cranial nerve paresis and mild selective impairment of attention and memory. Brain magnetic resonance imaging showed diffuse periventricular and lobar white matter hyperintensity. Laboratory findings included mixed cryoglobulinaemia (type II), cryocrit 1.47%, low serum levels of complement C4 and high levels of rheumatoid factor, HCV 1b genotype, high HCV mRNA levels in serum and cerebrospinal fluid. Skin biopsy showed evidence of vasculitis. After one year of plasmapheresis, immunosuppressant therapy and occasional corticosteroid treatment, neurological symptoms improved, skin biopsy changed and inflammation parameters normalised, suggesting that neurological symptoms might be related to the high levels of mixed cryoglobulins.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)360-363
Number of pages4
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2006


  • Cryoglobulin
  • HCV
  • Leukoencephalopathy
  • Peripheral neuropathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Neurology


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