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Focal amyotrophy in neurofibromatosis 2


Neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2) is an autosomal dominant disorder characterised by bilateral vestibular schwannomas and other CNS tumours including meningiomas and spinal schwannomas. Occasionally, peripheral neuropathy occurs in these patients but this is the first report of focal amyotrophy. Clinical, electrophysiological, and imaging data from four NF2 patients seen at a specialist neurofibromatosis clinic over a 4 year period are described in whom symptomatic focal amyotrophy preceded the diagnosis of NF2. Two presented with wasting and weakness of a single muscle group, several years before NF2 was diagnosed. In one patient a mononeuritis multiplex was the presenting feature of NF2, and in one patient focal wasting and weakness developed after the diagnosis of NF2 was made. In none of the four cases could a focal peripheral nerve or root neurofibroma be identified despite extensive imaging with MRI, and the limitations of neuroimaging for identifying a structural cause in patients with NF2 with a focal peripheral nerve lesion is discussed. It is likely that NF2 may affect peripheral nerve structures in a manner distinct from a compressive schwannoma.

  • neurofibromatosis 2
  • amyotrophy
  • magnetic resonance imaging

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