Clinical Neuroscience

Cerebral cavernous malformation type 1 with retinal blood vessel tortuosity and KRIT1 gene mutation

KALMÁR Tibor1, MARÓTI Zoltán1, VADVÁRI Árpád2, HALMOSI Ágnes3, KÁLOVITS Ferenc4,5, KÁLMÁN Bernadette5,6

JULY 30, 2019

Clinical Neuroscience - 2019;72(07-08)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.18071/isz.72.0273

Cerebral cavernous malformations (CCMs) represent a relatively rare and heterogeneous clinical entity with mutations identified in three genes. Both sporadic and familial forms have been reported. We present a young female patient with episodic paresthesia and headaches, but without acute neurological deficits. Her mother had a hemorrhaged cavernoma surgically removed 21 years ago. Cranial magnetic resonance imaging revealed multiple cavernous malformations in the size of a few millimeters and the ophthalmologic exam detected retinal blood vessel tortuosity in the proband. Targeted exome sequencing analysis identified a nonsense mutation in exon 16 of the KRIT1 gene, which resulted in a premature stop codon and a truncated protein underlying the abnormal development of cerebral and retinal blood vessels. This mutation with pathogenic significance has been reported before. Our case points to the importance of a thorough clinical and molecular work up despite the uncertain neurological complaints, since life style recommendations, imaging monitoring and genetic counseling may have major significance in the long term health of the patient.

AFFILIATIONS

  1. University of Szeged, Institute of Pediatrics and Pediatric Health Center, Szeged Hungary
  2. Markusovszky University Teaching Hospital, Department of Radiology, Szombathely
  3. Markusovszky University Teaching Hospital, Department of Ophthalmology, Szombathely
  4. Markusovszky University Teaching Hospital, Department of Neurosurgery, Szombathely
  5. University of Pécs, School of Medicine, School of Graduate Studies, Pécs
  6. Department of Molecular Pathology of the Markusovszky University Teaching Hospital, Szombathely

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Introduction – Although the involvement of the hypoglossal nerve together with other cranial nerves is common in several pathological conditions of the brain, particularly the brainstem, isolated hypoglossal nerve palsy is a rare condition and a diagnostic challenge. Case presentation – The presented patient arrived to the hospital with a history of slurred speech and an uncomfortable sensation on his tongue. Neurological examination showed left-sided hemiatrophy of the tongue with fasciculations and deviation towards the left side during protrusion. Based on the clinical and MRI findings, a diagnosis of hypoglossal nerve schwannoma was made. Discussion – Hypoglossal nerve palsy may arise from multiple causes such as trauma, infections, neoplasms, and endocrine, autoimmune and vascular pathologies. In our case, the isolated involvement of the hypoglossal nerve was at the skull base segment, where the damage to the hypoglossal nerve may occur mostly due to metastasis, nasopharyngeal carcinomas, nerve sheath tumors and glomus tumors. Conclusion – Because of the complexity of the region’s anatomy, the patient diagnosed with hypoglossal nerve schwannoma was referred for gamma knife radiosurgery.

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