Objective: To determine the frequency, in the UK, of sporadic Creutzfeldt–Jakob Disease (sCJD) with a cerebellar ataxic onset, and to describe the clinical features of the syndrome.
Methods: A retrospective review of autopsy-proved cases of sCJD cases in the UK, 1990–2005, identifying those presenting with cerebellar features without early cognitive decline.
Results: 29 of 618 (5%) patients with sCJD had an isolated cerebellar onset. Mean illness duration was 9 months. Subsequently, 21 (72%) developed myoclonus and 23 (79%) developed pyramidal features. Magnetic resonance imaging showed high signal in the basal ganglia in 11 of 14 (79%) patients. 7 of 15 (47%) patients were valine homozygotic at prion protein gene (PRNP)-129. Only 8 (28%) cases were referred to the surveillance unit after death.
Conclusion: A better definition of sCJD presenting with an isolated cerebellar syndrome might improve future case recognition and contribute to the determination of its cause.
- CJD, Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease
- CSF, cerebrospinal fluid
- EEG, electroencephalogram
- MRI, magnetic resonance imaging
- NCJDSU, National CJD Surveillance Unit
- PRNP, Prion protein gene
- sCJD, sporadic Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease
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Published Online First 11 July 2006
Competing interests: None.