Toxic leukoencephalopathy presenting as lethal catatonia
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Number of pages
SourceJournal of Addiction Medicine, 13, 3, (2019), pp. 241-244
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ BSI KLP
Journal of Addiction Medicine
SubjectExperimental Psychopathology and Treatment; Radboudumc 0: Other Research RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences; Radboudumc 13: Stress-related disorders DCMN: Donders Center for Medical Neuroscience; Radboudumc 3: Disorders of movement DCMN: Donders Center for Medical Neuroscience
INTRODUCTION: Catatonia is a syndrome that can present in different forms and can occur in multiple psychiatric and somatic conditions. This case report describes lethal catatonia caused by delayed toxic leukoencephalopathy after excessive use of cocaine and methadone. The characteristic radiographic imaging and biphasic course are discussed. CASE REPORT: A 54-year-old woman was presented unconsciously at the emergency department after intoxication with methadone and cocaine. After initial recovery, her condition deteriorated unexpectedly, resulting in lethal catatonia. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed hyperintense white matter abnormalities and diffusion restriction, evident for leukoencephalopathy. DISCUSSION: Catatonia can develop in multiple psychiatric and somatic diseases, including toxic leukoencephalopathy. A biphasic course and specific MRI findings are characteristics for delayed toxic leukoencephalopathy, due to intoxication with drugs.
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