Acute necrotizing encephalopathy secondary to diphtheria, tetanus toxoid and whole-cell pertussis vaccination: diffusion-weighted imaging and proton MR spectroscopy findings

Pediatr Radiol. 2010 Jul;40(7):1281-4. doi: 10.1007/s00247-009-1498-9. Epub 2010 Jan 30.


We present a previously healthy 6-month-old boy who was admitted to our hospital with lethargy, hypotonia and focal clonic seizures 6 days following diptheria, tetanus toxoid and whole-cell pertussis vaccination. A diagnosis of acute necrotising encephalopathy was made with the aid of MRI, including diffusion-weighted imaging and proton MR spectroscopy.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Brain / drug effects
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Diffusion Magnetic Resonance Imaging / methods*
  • Diphtheria / complications*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Leukoencephalitis, Acute Hemorrhagic / chemically induced*
  • Leukoencephalitis, Acute Hemorrhagic / diagnosis*
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy / methods*
  • Male
  • Pertussis Vaccine / adverse effects*
  • Tetanus Toxin
  • Tetanus Toxoid / adverse effects*


  • Pertussis Vaccine
  • Tetanus Toxin
  • Tetanus Toxoid