Reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy occurring during resection of a posterior fossa tumor: Case report and review of the literature

John L. Moriarity, Michael Lim, Phillip B. Storm, Norman J. Beauchamp, Alessandro Olivi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

OBJECTIVE AND IMPORTANCE: Our goal was to present a clinically and radiographically documented case of reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy (RPL) that occurred during resection of a posterior fossa tumor. Although RPL has been previously described in multiple nonsurgical settings, we hope that this case description makes RPL more clinically and radiographically recognizable to neurosurgeons. CLINICAL PRESENTATION: RPL is the clinical syndrome of headaches, altered mental status, seizures, and visual loss, with radiographic findings of reversible parieto-occipital changes on cerebral computed tomographic and magnetic resonance imaging scans. It has been previously reported in the settings of malignant hypertension, renal disease, eclampsia, and immunosuppression. To our knowledge, the patient presented represents the first clinically and radiographically documented case of RPL occurring during resection of a posterior fossa tumor. The patient intraoperatively exhibited wide fluctuations in blood pressure and awoke with clinical and radiographic findings consistent with RPL. INTERVENTION: Aggressive intraoperative and postoperative management of the patient's blood pressure, supportive intensive care, rehabilitation, and close radiographic follow-up were performed. CONCLUSION: RPL can occur as a result of intraoperative variations in blood pressure, even among young, previously healthy individuals. With the aforementioned interventions, the patient experienced significant clinical and radiographic recovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1237-1240
Number of pages4
JournalNeurosurgery
Volume49
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 6 2001

Keywords

  • Ependymoma
  • Hypertensive encephalopathy
  • Occipitoparietal encephalopathy
  • Posterior fossa surgery
  • Reversible posterior teukoencephalopathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology

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