Non-encephalopathic presentations of CNS thiamine deficiency may be difficult to diagnose. We describe neuro-otologic findings of Wernicke syndrome in 5 patients with vestibular manifestations. Diagnosis was confirmed by low serum levels, response to replacement, and brain MRI to exclude other causes. All had bilaterally abnormal horizontal head impulse vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR) responses and pathologic gaze-evoked nystagmus, without encephalopathy. After thia-mine replacement, 4 had total resolution of vestibular and oculomotor findings. Novel findings included 2 patients whose VOR function improved within minutes of IV repletion and 1 whose recovery was documented by serial quantitative recordings. Early diagnosis of Wer-nicke by examining vestibular reflexes and prompt IV treatment might prevent encephalopathy and other neurologic or systemic complications of thiamine depletion.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Neurology: Clinical Practice|
|State||Published - Dec 2013|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology