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Year : 2001  |  Volume : 49  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 277--83

Vasculitic neuropathy in HIV infection : a clinicopathological study.

Department of Neuropathology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore-560 029, India., India

Correspondence Address:
A Mahadevan
Department of Neuropathology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore-560 029, India.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 11593246

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Vasculitis causing peripheral neuropathy may be the first sign of HIV infection. We report four such cases in whom the onset of peripheral neuropathy led to the detection of HIV infection. Two patients presented with features of mononeuritis multiplex, while the other two had a lumbosacral polyradiculopathy. A prior history of blood transfusion was forthcoming in one of the patients. Sural nerve biopsies in all the four cases and the muscle biopsy in two, histologically showed evidence of vasculitis. Immunohistochemically, the viral antigen was not demonstrable in any of the biopsies, but on electron microscope, virus-like particles were identifiable in the Schwann cell cytoplasm and the perivascular macrophages in one case. To the best of our knowledge, this is the only report that has documented the virus in the Schwann cells as well as the perivascular macrophages lending credence to the fact that these viruses are neurotropic as well as lymphotropic. Immunoglobulin deposits were not demonstrable in any of the cases, suggesting that direct viral invasion may have a role in the pathogenesis of peripheral nerve vasculitis.


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Online since 20th March '04
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow