Neurological involvement in North Italian patients with Behçet disease

Rheumatol Int. 2006 Oct;26(12):1113-9. doi: 10.1007/s00296-006-0149-9. Epub 2006 Jun 23.


The aim of this study was to evaluate neurological involvement in a series of 110 North Italian patients with Behçet disease (BD), a multisystemic vasculitis of unknown origin, followed up for a period of 5 years. During this time, 27 (24.5%) patients with neuro-BD were identified. Twenty out of 27 showed at least one acute attack in their clinical course. In 14 of them, a neurological evaluation was carried out during the attack. The other 13 patients were evaluated during a remission phase. The onset of neuro-BD was usually characterized by an acute attack with motor symptoms (66.6%) and behavioural/cognitive changes (47.6%), while headache was more frequent in the remission phase (76.9%). On magnetic resonance imaging, large brain-stem/diencephalon lesions were usually seen during the attack. In the remission phase, they were often located in the white-matter. Aspecific cerebrospinal fluid abnormalities were usually seen during the attacks. Cerebrospinal fluid analysis together with radiological and clinical features seems to be useful for the differential diagnosis in these patients.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Behcet Syndrome / complications
  • Behcet Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Behcet Syndrome / pathology
  • Brain / pathology
  • Central Nervous System Diseases / complications
  • Central Nervous System Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Central Nervous System Diseases / pathology
  • Cerebrospinal Fluid / chemistry
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Italy
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Spinal Cord / pathology