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Complete bilateral horizontal gaze paralysis disclosing multiple sclerosis
  1. D Mileaa,
  2. M Napolitanob,
  3. H Dechyc,
  4. P Le Hoanga,
  5. J-Y Delattreb,
  6. C Pierrot-Deseillignyb
  1. aDepartment of Ophthalmology, Hôpital de la Pitié-Salpêtrière, Paris, France, bDepartment of Neurology and INSERM 289, cHôpital Ambroise Paré, Boulogne-sur-Seine, France
  1. C Pierrot-Deseilligny, Service de Neurologie 1, Hôpital de la Pitié-Salpêtrière, 47 Boulevard de l'Hôpital, 75651 Paris Cedex 13, Francecp.deseilligny{at}


Two women presented with bilateral internuclear ophthalmoplegia evolving in a few days to complete bilateral horizontal gaze paralysis. Convergence and vertical eye movements were normal. Cerebral MRI showed a few small white matter lesions in the lateral ventricle regions, and, at the brainstem level, a single, small, bilateral lesion affecting the posterior part of the medial pontine tegmentum and responsible for the clinical syndrome. The condition gradually improved in both patients, following a similar progression as at the onset: improvement first involved the adduction movements in both eyes, whereas bilateral abduction paresis still persisted for a few weeks, before complete recovery of eye movements. Bilateral damage to the medial longitudinal fasciculus and subsequent lateral extent of damage to the region of the two abducens emerging fibres may explain the clinical findings. In both cases, the cause was probably multiple sclerosis.

  • multiple sclerosis
  • bilateral gaze palsy
  • internuclear ophthalmoplegia

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