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Guillain-Barré Syndrome

A 32 year old man developed progressive weakness and numbness of the legs that quickly ascended to involve the arms and bulbar muscles over two days. Reflexes were absent. A diagnosis of Guillain-Barré syndrome was made and the patient was begun on intravenous gammaglobulin (IVIG).

Show the Conus Medullaris    Show the Gadolinium Enhancment of the Nerve Roots

Sagittal MRI Scans: (Left) T1-weighted; (Right) T1-weighted with gadolinium. Note that the entire cauda equina enhances with gadolinium. This pattern of nerve root enhancement can be seen in inflammatory disorders, such as GBS and chronic inflammatory demyelinating neuropathy, as well as granulomatous (e.g., sarcoid) and infiltrating neoplastic conditions (especially lymphoma).

Revised 05/10/06.
The Electronic Curriculum is copyrighted 1998,  Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine.