Peripheral T cell lymphoma after chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids (CLIPPERS): a case report

BMC Neurol. 2019 Nov 4;19(1):266. doi: 10.1186/s12883-019-1507-z.


Background: Chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids (CLIPPERS) is an inflammatory disorder in the central nervous system (CNS) with distinct clinical, radiological, and pathological characteristics. The pathophysiology of CLIPPERS still remains unclear. Because a few cases about lymphoma mimicking the manifestations of CLIPPERS were reported and the prognosis of lymphoma is much worse, early identification of lymphoma is very important.

Case presentation: A 31-year-old woman was admitted with 3 months' history of diplopia, dizziness, gait ataxia, and right facial numbness. The diagnosis of CLIPPERS was established based on the finding of punctate enhancing lesions in the cerebellum, thalamus, pons, medulla, and midbrain region in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), together with the favorable clinical and radiological responses to corticosteroids. However, she was diagnosed as peripheral T cell lymphoma, not otherwise specified (PTCL-NOS) by the pulmonary nodular and the skin biopsy almost 10 years later, and she got complete remission within 1 year after chemotherapy.

Conclusion: We report the first case of CLIPPERS developing PTCL-NOS. This case proposes that when brain biopsy was difficult to achieve, biopsies in extra-cerebral lesions under the assisting examination of positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET-CT) can be helpful in further identification.

Keywords: Biopsy; CLIPPERS; PTCL-NOS; Steroids.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biopsy
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain / pathology
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Central Nervous System Diseases*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inflammation*
  • Lymphoma, T-Cell, Peripheral*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Steroids / therapeutic use


  • Steroids