Myeloradiculopathy associated with chikungunya virus infection

Anna M. Bank*, Ayush Batra, Rene A. Colorado, Jennifer L. Lyons

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a mosquito-borne alphavirus that is endemic to parts of Africa, South and Southeast Asia, and more recently the Caribbean. Patients typically present with fever, rash, and arthralgias, though neurologic symptoms, primarily encephalitis, have been described. We report the case of a 47-year-old woman who was clinically diagnosed with CHIKV while traveling in the Dominican Republic and presented 10 days later with left lower extremity weakness, a corresponding enhancing thoracic spinal cord lesion, and positive CHIKV serologies. She initially responded to corticosteroids, followed by relapsing symptoms and gradual clinical improvement. The time lapse between acute CHIKV infection and the onset of myelopathic sequelae suggests an immune-mediated phenomenon rather than direct activity of the virus itself. Chikungunya virus should be considered in the differential diagnosis of myelopathy in endemic areas. The progression of symptoms despite corticosteroid administration suggests more aggressive immunomodulatory therapies may be warranted at disease onset.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)125-128
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of NeuroVirology
Volume22
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016

Keywords

  • Chikungunya
  • Infectious myelopathy
  • Myelopathy
  • Viral myelopathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Virology

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