Table 1

Clinical data for the seven patients with anti-onconeural antibodies (group I). Delay indicates the interval between the onset of neurological symptoms and cancer diagnosis. In every case, the neuropathy preceded the discovery of the tumour. The revised Rankin score is used to estimate the maximal deficit reached by the patients

NoSex/ageDelay (months)Clinical manifestationsRankinCourseElectrophysiology
1M/5623Sensory > motor symmetric in four limbs ataxia. Central nystagmus. Hearing loss. Pain. Depressed tendon reflexes 4ProgressiveReduced or absent SAP. Normal SCV. Reduced MAP, normal MCV. Reduced interferential pattern
2M/569Sensory symmetric in four limbs. Pain. Ataxia. Depressed tendon reflexes nystagmus, temporal lobe epilepsy 4ProgressiveReduced SAP. Significantly reduced SCV (3.4μV and 29 m/s in ulnar nerves). Almost normal MCV
3M/618Sensory > motor deficit asymmetric in lower limbs. Areflexia. Pain. Digestive obstruction3SubacuteAbsent SAP. Mildly reduced MCV in lower limbs with TD. Reduced interferential pattern
4M/738Sensory > motor asymmetric in lower limbs. Areflexia. Cerebellar ataxia3SubacuteAbsent SAP. Mildly reduced SCV. Mild reduction of MAP and MCV reduced interferential pattern
5M/502Multifocal sensory and painful. Reduced tendon reflex. Orthostatic hypotension 2SubacuteAbsent or reduced SAP. Normal SCV normal MCV. Normal electromyography
6M/658Asymmetric sensory > motor deficit in four limbs. Pain. Ataxia. Memory loss

4ProgressiveReduced or absent SAP. Mildly reduced MAP and MCV. Prolonged F waves. Temporal dispersion in tibial nerves Reduced interferential pattern
7F/6212Sensory-motor deficit and areflexia in lower limbs. Cerebellar ataxia orthostatic hypotension4ProgressiveReduced SAP and SCV. Reduced MAP. Mildly reduced MCV. Reduced interferential pattern

2.0 g/l 54 lymphoSCLCNerve biopsy, fibre loss, axonal degeneration

1.14 g/l 43 lymphoSCLCNerve biopsy, fibre loss, axonal degeneration

0.42 g/l 1 lymphoSCLCNerve biopsy, fibre loss

0.78 g/l 1 lymphoSmall cell carinoma prostateNerve biopsy, axonal degeneration

1.2 g/l 1 lymphoSCLCND

1.62 g/l 52 lymphoSCLCNecropsy: mild ganglionitis, fibre loss in distal nerves. Demyelination, onion bulbs endoneurial lymphocytesAnti-Hu
0.77 g/l 17 lymphoUndifferentiated carinoma mediastinumNecropsy: normal sensory ganglia and spinal cord. Fibre loss demyelinated fibersAnti-CV2
  • Course corresponds to the onset of neurological symptoms: acute, <1 month; subacute 1-2 months; progressive, >2 months; CSF=number of lymphocytes/mm3; ND=not done; SCLC=small cell lung carcinoma; SAP=sensory action potential; SCV=sensory conduction velocities; MAP=motor action potentials; MCV= motor conduction velocities.