Clinical Neuroscience

[Hungarian Epilepsy League - Account on the meeting of the Hungarian Epilepsy League]


JANUARY 30, 2010

Clinical Neuroscience - 2010;63(01-02)



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

[Frontotemporal dementia, Pick’s disease]

ANDREW Kertesz

[A significant expansion of knowledge in the last few years, especially in the molecular biology of frontotemporal dementia (FTD) is summarized. This condition, formerly known as Pick’s disease and considered rare, is estimated to be 12-15% of all dementias and 30-50% early onset ones. The clinical picture is protean, mainly a behavioural and language impairment, but the extrapyramidal syndromes of CBD and PSP also belong. These seemingly different presentations converge, as one or other areas in the brain are affected. Less than half of the cases are tauopathies, the majority has been discovered to have a TDP-43 and most recently a FUS proteinopathy, shared with ALS, opening potential opportunities for pharmacological approaches to treatment. Tau and progranulin mutations on Ch-17 and some others, point to molecular mechanisms. A glossary is provided to navigate the complex terminology.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Congress calendar]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Anterior cervical fusion on the lower cervical spine: own clinical experiences]


[Both acute and chronic instability of the cervical spine can be succesfully treated by anterior crevical fusion. The main goal is to create a spondylodesis through which the instable motion segments are fixed in the position defined by the surgeon. The spondylodesis is realised by the bone healing of the intervertebral space. The consolidation itself is facilitated by the operative stabilisation of the segments involved, and also by the implantation/transplantation of the osteoproductive/ osteoinductive materials. The sooner consolidation is achieved, the more likely it is to be able to avoid the material dependent complications and/or that of dislocation. So as to support this theory a retrospective clinical/radiological study was performed. During this the length and the safety of the consolidation was measured by applying various anterior cervical plating systems. A total of 485 patients having cervical injuries or degenerative disc disease were treated by anterior cervical plating. For bone transplantation partly pure autolog spongious partly autolog cortico-spongious morsalised bone chips, furthermore autolog tricortical bone block were applied. A standard protocoll was used for data collection, evaluation and also follow-up. The patients treated with plate systems were divided into 3 groups: Group 1: Non-locked H-plate system with autogeneous cancellous bone (155 trauma patients, for a total of 210 cervical motion segments, 1.35 segments/patients). Group 2: Non-locked H-plate system with tricortical autograft (167 patients, for a total of 290 cervical motion segments, 1.73 segments/patients). Group 3: Locked cervical plate system with tricortical autograft (73 patients, for a total of 110 cervical motion segments, 1.5 segments/patients). Patients treated with standalone cage belong to group 4. These cages were filled with autogenous cortico-spongiosus bone chips (90 patients, for a total of 90 cervical motion segments, 1.0 segments/patients). Evaluations included postoperative clinical, X-ray and CT examination, and follow-ups at 6, 16, 52, and 104 weeks. We established three grades, and classified the degree of bony fusion between the graft and vertebra: not-yet-fused, fused or non-union. When evaluating the results the following statements/observations were made: a) There is a fast and safe consolidation in the case of those patients that underwent dinamic disc osteosynthesis (p=0.00001). b) Whereas performing fixation with non-locked or locked screw plate systems and strutgrafted with tricortical autograft created prolonged healing requiring months and developed non-unions more often (non-locked screw-plate system versus locked screwplate system) (p>0.05). c) Using locked screw-plate fixation systems non-union rate in our study was 21%, suggesting that this form of fixation has only a limited use. d) In our study complete consolidation without pseudoarthrosis was achieved by using standalone cages filled with autolog cortico- spongiosus bone chips, but bony healing was delayed due to cage coating and the substitution of pure autogenous spongiosa for cortico-spongiosus bone chips. It is recommended to treat acute/chronic instability of the cervical spine both by using non-fixed plate system with autolog cancellosus bone and by standalone cage filled with cortico-spongiosus bone chips as well. It is worth keeping in mind that by applying this lattest an extra surgery to harvest the graft will be avoided.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Posterior cortical atrophy (Benson-syndrome)]

RÓZSA Anikó, SZILVÁSSY Ildikó, KOVÁCS Krisztina, BOÓR Krisztina, GÁCS Gyula

[We present the characteristics of posterior cortical atrophy - a very rare cortical dementia - in a 69 year old woman’s case. Our patient’s symptoms began with a visual problem which was initially explained by ophthalmological disorder. After neurological exam visual agnosia was diagnosed apart from other cognitive disorder (alexia without agraphia, acalculia, prosopagnosia, constructional disorder, clock-time recognition disorder, dressing apraxia, visuospatial disorientation). The brain MRI showed bilateral asymmetric parieto-occipital atrophy which is characteristic of posterior cortical atrophy.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Clinical immunological and immunogenetical aspects of neurological diseases]


All articles in the issue

Related contents

Clinical Neuroscience

Neuroscience highlights: Main cell types underlying memory and spatial navigation

KRABOTH Zoltán, KÁLMÁN Bernadette

Interest in the hippocampal formation and its role in navigation and memory arose in the second part of the 20th century, at least in part due to the curious case of Henry G. Molaison, who underwent brain surgery for intractable epilepsy. The temporal association observed between the removal of his entorhinal cortex along with a significant part of hippocampus and the developing severe memory deficit inspired scientists to focus on these regions. The subsequent discovery of the so-called place cells in the hippocampus launched the description of many other functional cell types and neuronal networks throughout the Papez-circuit that has a key role in memory processes and spatial information coding (speed, head direction, border, grid, object-vector etc). Each of these cell types has its own unique characteristics, and together they form the so-called “Brain GPS”. The aim of this short survey is to highlight for practicing neurologists the types of cells and neuronal networks that represent the anatomical substrates and physiological correlates of pathological entities affecting the limbic system, especially in the temporal lobe. For that purpose, we survey early discoveries along with the most relevant neuroscience observations from the recent literature. By this brief survey, we highlight main cell types in the hippocampal formation, and describe their roles in spatial navigation and memory processes. In recent decades, an array of new and functionally unique neuron types has been recognized in the hippocampal formation, but likely more remain to be discovered. For a better understanding of the heterogeneous presentations of neurological disorders affecting this anatomical region, insights into the constantly evolving neuroscience behind may be helpful. The public health consequences of diseases that affect memory and spatial navigation are high, and grow as the population ages, prompting scientist to focus on further exploring this brain region.

Clinical Neuroscience

[Advanced Parkinson’s disease characteristics in clinical practice: Results from the OBSERVE-PD study and sub-analysis of the Hungarian data]

TAKÁTS Annamária, ASCHERMANN Zsuzsanna, VÉCSEI László, KLIVÉNYI Péter, DÉZSI Lívia, ZÁDORI Dénes, VALIKOVICS Attila, VARANNAI Lajos, ONUK Koray, KINCZEL Beatrix, KOVÁCS Norbert

[The majority of patients with advanced Parkinson’s disease are treated at specialized movement disorder centers. Currently, there is no clear consensus on how to define the stages of Parkinson’s disease; the proportion of Parkinson’s patients with advanced Parkinson’s disease, the referral process, and the clinical features used to characterize advanced Parkinson’s disease are not well delineated. The primary objective of this observational study was to evaluate the proportion of Parkinson’s patients identified as advanced patients according to physician’s judgment in all participating movement disorder centers across the study. Here we evaluate the Hungarian subset of the participating patients. The study was conducted in a cross-sectional, non-interventional, multi-country, multi-center format in 18 countries. Data were collected during a single patient visit. Current Parkinson’s disease status was assessed with Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) parts II, III, IV, and V (modified Hoehn and Yahr staging). Non-motor symptoms were assessed using the PD Non-motor Symptoms Scale (NMSS); quality of life was assessed with the PD 8-item Quality-of-Life Questionnaire (PDQ-8). Parkinson’s disease was classified as advanced versus non-advanced based on physician assessment and on questions developed by the Delphi method. Overall, 2627 patients with Parkinson’s disease from 126 sites were documented. In Hungary, 100 patients with Parkinson’s disease were documented in four movement disorder centers, and, according to the physician assessment, 50% of these patients had advanced Parkinson’s disease. Their mean scores showed significantly higher impairment in those with, versus without advanced Parkinson’s disease: UPDRS II (14.1 vs. 9.2), UPDRS IV Q32 (1.1 vs. 0.0) and Q39 (1.1 vs. 0.5), UPDRS V (2.8 vs. 2.0) and PDQ-8 (29.1 vs. 18.9). Physicians in Hungarian movement disorder centers assessed that half of the Parkinson’s patients had advanced disease, with worse motor and non-motor symptom severity and worse QoL than those without advanced Parkinson’s disease. Despite being classified as eligible for invasive/device-aided treatment, that treatment had not been initiated in 25% of these patients.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Zonisamide: one of the first-line antiepileptic drugs in focal epilepsy ]


[Chronic administration of antiepileptic drugs without history of unprovoked epileptic seizures are not recommended for epilepsy prophylaxis. Conversely, if the patient suffered the first unprovoked seizure, then the presence of epileptiform discharges on the EEG, focal neurological signs, and the presence of epileptogenic lesion on the MRI are risk factors for a second seizure (such as for the development of epilepsy). Without these risk factors, the chance of a second seizure is about 25-30%, while the presence of these risk factors (for example signs of previous stroke, neurotrauma, or encephalitis on the MRI) can predict >70% seizure recurrence. Thus the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) re-defined the term ’epilepsy’ which can be diagnosed even after the first seizure, if the risk of seizure recurrence is high. According to this definition, we can start antiepileptic drug therapy after a single unprovoked seizure. There are four antiepileptic drugs which has the highest evidence (level „A”) as first-line initial monotherapy for treating newly diagnosed epilepsy. These are: carbamazepine, phenytoin, levetiracetam, and zonisamide (ZNS). The present review focuses on the ZNS. Beacuse ZNS can be administrated once a day, it is an optimal drug for maintaining patient’s compliance and for those patients who have a high risk for developing a non-compliance (for example teenagers and young adults). Due to the low interaction potential, ZNS treatment is safe and effective in treating epilepsy of elderly people. ZNS is an ideal drug in epilepsy accompanied by obesity, because ZNS has a weight loss effect, especially in obese patients.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Interdisciplinary approach of vestibular system impairment]


[In the first part of this review the definition of vertigo/dizziness was discussed. The major difference between the two signs is the exsistence of the direction, which is specific for vertigo. Dizziness is a frequent complaint in the clinical practice. Its frequency is increasing with advance of age, to intimate the play of declining cognitive process in the pathogenesis of its. The popular health significance of vertigo is in the rowing number of the patients. The onset of the most cases with acute vertigo appears between secundums and minutes so the patients will be provided in circumstances of emergency department. First of all three form schould be take into account: neuronitis vestibularis, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo and Meniere syndrome. Without tipical periferal signs of vertigo, central cause should be searched, principally stroke (lysis possibility). The differential diagnose of the different dizzeness/vertigo forms according to the elapsed time of the onset or congenital and acquired nystagmus was created in tables. The recommendations of the therapy of acute and chronic dizziness/ vertigo syndroms are, lack of results of evidence based trials doubtful. The more often used drugs based on clinical trials are discussed as vinpocetine, betahistine and piracetam. The in vitro and in vivo data suggest that the last molecule is eligible to use both in periferal and central type of vertigo syndroms.]

Clinical Neuroscience

Effects of valproate, carbamazepine and levetiracetam on Tp-e interval, Tp-e/QT and Tp-e/QTc ratio


Aim - To evaluate P-wave dispersion before and after antiepileptic drug (AED) treatment as well as to investigate the risk of ventricular repolarization using the Tpeak-Tend (Tp-e) interval and Tp-e/QT ratio in patients with epileptic disorder. Methods - A total of 63 patients receiving AED therapy and 35 healthy adults were included. ECG recordings were obtained before and 3 months after anti-epileptic treatment among patients with epilepsy. For both groups, Tp-e and Tp-e/QT ratio were measured using a 12-lead ECG device. Results - Tp-e interval, Tpe/QT and Tp-e/QTc ratios were found to be higher in the patient group than in the control group (p<0.05, for all), while QTmax ratio was significantly lower in the patient group. After 3 months of AED therapy, significant increases in QT max, QTc max, QTcd, Tp-e, Tp-e/QT, and Tp-e/QTc were found among the patients (p<0.05). When the arrhythmic effects of the drugs before and after treatment were compared, especially in the valproic acid group, there were significant increases in Tp-e interval, Tp-e/QT and Tp-e/QTc values after three months of treatment (p<0.05). Carbamazepine and levetiracetam groups were not statistically significant in terms of pre- and post-treatment values. Conclusions - It was concluded that an arrhythmogenic environment may be associated with the disease, and patients who received AED monotherapy may need to be followed up more closely for arrhythmia.