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April 10, 2012
Neuromyelitis optica or NMO is an autoimmune inflammatory disease of the central nervous system characterized by severe attacks of optic neuritis and longitudinally extensive transverse myelitis. Anti–aquaporin 4 antibody is specific to NMO but is also associated with isolated optic neuritis or isolated longitudinally extensive transverse myelitis. About 25% of patients present with brain symptoms as their first manifestation, most commonly brain stem symptoms including vomiting and hiccups and cerebral symptoms including mental change and hemiparesis.
1. Kim S–H, Kim W, Li X, Jung I–J and Kim H. Clinical spectrum of CNS aquaporin–4 autoimmunity. Neurology 2012; 78: 1058–1063
Disclosure: Dr. Karam serves on the editorial team for the Neurology Resident and Fellow Section.
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