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Concept: Medical diagnosis

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A growing number of progressive heredodegenerative conditions mimic the presentation of Huntington’s disease (HD). Differentiating among these HD-like syndromes is necessary when a patient with a combination of movement disorders, cognitive decline, behavioural abnormalities and progressive disease course proves negative to the genetic testing for HD causative mutations, that is, IT15 gene trinucleotide-repeat expansion. The differential diagnosis of HD-like syndromes is complex and may lead to unnecessary and costly investigations. We propose here a guide to this differential diagnosis focusing on a limited number of clinical features (‘red flags’) that can be identified through accurate clinical examination, collection of historical data and a few routine ancillary investigations. These features include the ethnic background of the patient, the involvement of the facio-bucco-lingual and cervical district by the movement disorder, the co-occurrence of cerebellar features and seizures, the presence of peculiar gait patterns and eye movement abnormalities, and an atypical progression of illness. Additional help may derive from the cognitive-behavioural presentation of the patient, as well as by a restricted number of ancillary investigations, mainly MRI and routine blood tests. These red flags should be constantly updated as the phenotypic characterisation and identification of more reliable diagnostic markers for HD-like syndromes progress over the following years.

Concepts: Gene, Genetic disorder, Medical terms, Medical diagnosis, Huntington's disease, Presentation of Mary, Differential diagnosis, Huntingtin

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BACKGROUND: Pathologic studies played an important role in evaluating patients with Alport syndrome besides genotyping. Difficulties still exist in diagnosing Alport syndrome (AS), and misdiagnosis is a not-so-rare event, even in adult patient evaluated with renal biopsy. METHODS: We used nested case–control study to investigate 52 patients previously misdiagnosed and 52 patients initially diagnosed in the China Alport Syndrome Treatments and Outcomes Registry e-system. RESULTS: We found mesangial proliferative glomerulonephritis (MsPGN, 26.9%) and focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS, 19.2%) were the most common misdiagnosis. FSGS was the most frequent misdiagnosis in female X-linked AS (fXLAS) patients (34.8%), and MsPGN in male X-linked AS (mXLAS) patients (41.2%). Previous misdiagnosed mXLAS patients (13/17, 76.5%) and autosomal recessive AS (ARAS) patients (8/12, 66.7%) were corrected after a second renal biopsy. While misdiagnosed fXLAS patients (18/23, 78.3%) were corrected after a family member diagnosed (34.8%) or after rechecking electronic microscopy and/or collagen-IV alpha-chains immunofluresence study (COL-IF) (43.5%) during follow-up. With COL-IF as an additional criterion for AS diagnosis, we found that patients with less than 3 criteria reached have increased risk of misdiagnosis (3.29-fold for all misdiagnosed AS patients and 3.90-fold for fXLAS patients). CONCLUSION: We emphasize timely and careful study of electronic microscopy and COL-IF in pathologic evaluation of AS patients. With renal and/or skin COL-IF as additional criterion, 3 diagnosis criteria reached are the cutoff for diagnosing AS pathologically.

Concepts: Medical terms, Diagnosis, Pathology, Medical diagnosis, Glomerulonephritis, Sex linkage, Dominance, Alport syndrome

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INTRODUCTION. Encephalitis associated to anti-N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antibodies is an autoimmune neurological pathology that has been reported increasingly more frequently in the paediatric population in recent years. We report two cases from our own experience with similar clinical pictures. CASE REPORTS. Case 1: a 5-year-old girl who began with clinical signs and symptoms of convulsions and altered consciousness, associated to movement disorders and regression of previously acquired abilities that developed into autism. Case 2: a 13-year-old girl who presented left-side hemiparesis, abnormal movements, conduct disorder and dysautonomia. In both cases positive anti-NMDA receptor antibodies were obtained in cerebrospinal fluid and they were diagnosed with anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis. In the first case, treatment was established with intravenous perfusion of corticoids and immunoglobulins, and rituximab also had to be associated. In the second case, treatment consisted in corticoids and immunoglobulins. Progress was favourable in both cases, with a slight language disorder as a sequela in the first case and a relapse in the second case, with full resolution. CONCLUSIONS. Anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis is a treatable disorder and early diagnosis and treatment are crucial, since this improves the prognosis and diminishes the chances of relapses.

Concepts: Immune system, Antibody, Medicine, Medical terms, Rheumatoid arthritis, Multiple sclerosis, Neurology, Medical diagnosis

165

In recent years, antisynthetase syndrome has been recognized as an important cause of autoimmune inflammatory myopathy in a subset of patients with polymyositis and dermatomyositis. It is associated with serum antibodies to aminoacyl-transfer RNA synthetases and is characterized by a constellation of manifestations, including fever, myositis, interstitial lung disease, “mechanic’s hands,” Raynaud phenomenon, and polyarthritis. Physicians should be familiar with its variety of clinical presentations and should include it in the differential diagnosis in patients presenting with unexplained interstitial lung disease.

Concepts: Medical terms, Medical diagnosis, Differential diagnosis, Myopathy, Polymyositis

162

Colonoscopy is a widely used diagnostic and therapeutic modality with a relatively low morbidity. However, given the large volume of procedures performed, awareness of the infrequent complications is essential. Perforation is an established complication of colonoscopy, and can range from 0.2%-3% depending on the series, population and modality of colonoscopy. Acute appendicitis after colonoscopy is an extremely rare event, and a cause-effect relationship between the colonoscopy and the appendicitis is not well documented. In addition, awareness of this condition can aid in prompt diagnosis. Relatively mild symptoms and exclusion of bowel perforation by contrast studies do not exclude appendicitis from the differential diagnosis for post-colonoscopy pain. In addition to the difficult diagnosis inherent to postcolonoscopy appendicitis, treatment strategies have varied greatly. This paper reviews these approaches. We also expand upon prior articles by giving guidance for the role of nonoperative management in these patients. This case and review of the literature will help to create awareness about this complication, and guide optimal treatment of pericolonoscopy appendicitis.

Concepts: Medical terms, Diagnosis, Medical emergencies, Medical diagnosis, Differential diagnosis, Peritonitis, Rectal examination, Vermiform appendix

162

Angiosarcoma is a rare disease with a poor prognosis; significantly, patients with intestinal angiosarcomas who survive over 1 year after diagnosis are extraordinarily rare. This article describes the case of a 33-year-old gentleman who presented with abdominal pain of 4 months duration, which had increased in severity 2 weeks prior to presentation. After a complicated diagnostic and therapeutic process, the diagnosis of primary angiosarcoma of the small intestine with metastasis to the liver was made by pathological and immunohistochemical examinations. We reviewed previous cases of angiosarcoma described in the English literature to determine their risk factors, diagnosis and treatment, and we found that angiosarcoma is extremely rare, especially in the small intestine. To the best of our knowledge, this may be the youngest case of primary angiosarcoma of the small intestine with metastasis to the liver reported in the English literature.

Concepts: Cancer, Medical terms, Liver, Medical diagnosis, Large intestine, Intestine, Small intestine, English studies

145

Ovarian tumors in reptiles are uncommonly reported in the literature and for green iguanas previously reported cases include teratomas, one adenocarcinoma and one papillary cystadenocarcinoma. The present report is the first of a malignant ovarian teratoma in a green iguana. Complete and detailed pathological features, differential diagnosis and surgical management of malignant ovarian teratoma are discussed in this paper.

Concepts: Medical diagnosis, Ovarian cancer, Differential diagnosis, Teratoma, Lizard, Iguanidae, Green Iguana, Iguana

61

Diagnosis of ‘specific’ language impairment traditionally required nonverbal IQ to be within normal limits, often resulting in restricted access to clinical services for children with lower NVIQ. Changes to DSM-5 criteria for language disorder removed this NVIQ requirement. This study sought to delineate the impact of varying NVIQ criteria on prevalence, clinical presentation and functional impact of language disorder in the first UK population study of language impairment at school entry.

Concepts: Medical diagnosis, Linguistics, Language, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Sign language, Requirement, Requirements analysis

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Cancer, one of the world’s leading causes of death today, remains almost absent relative to other pathological conditions, in the archaeological record, giving rise to the conclusion that the disease is mainly a product of modern living and increased longevity. This paper presents a male, young-adult individual from the archaeological site of Amara West in northern Sudan (c. 1200BC) displaying multiple, mainly osteolytic, lesions on the vertebrae, ribs, sternum, clavicles, scapulae, pelvis, and humeral and femoral heads. Following radiographic, microscopic and scanning electron microscopic (SEM) imaging of the lesions, and a consideration of differential diagnoses, a diagnosis of metastatic carcinoma secondary to an unknown soft tissue cancer is suggested. This represents the earliest complete example in the world of a human who suffered metastatic cancer to date. The study further draws its strength from modern analytical techniques applied to differential diagnoses and the fact that it is firmly rooted within a well-documented archaeological and historical context, thus providing new insights into the history and antiquity of the disease as well as its underlying causes and progression.

Concepts: Cancer, Breast cancer, Metastasis, Lung cancer, Pathology, Medical diagnosis, Archaeology, Archaeological site