Unusual magnetic resonance imaging abnormality in nonketotic hyperglycemia – related epilepsia partialis continua

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Epilepsia partialis continua (EPC) is a rare epileptic syndrome, presenting as continuous focal motor seizures for a period of minutes, hours, or days. EPC may develop in patients with cerebral cortical lesions and occasionally may develop in patients with metabolic disorders, such as nonketotic hyperglycemia (NKH). Here, we report a case of EPC following NKH, showing an unusual magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) finding of concurrent hypointensity on susceptibility-weighted image (SWI) and T2-weighted image (T2WI) with leptomeningeal and cortical enhancement, which have never been reported. A 68-year-old woman presented to our emergency department with a 3-day history of involuntary repeated contraction of the right side of the face and upper limb. Laboratory data revealed NKH of diabetes mellitus. Electroencephalography (EEG) was unremarkable. Brain MRI revealed focal cortical and leptomeningeal enhancement together with subcortical T2 shortening and SWI hypointensity of the left frontal operculum. She responded well for hyperglycemia and antiepileptic drug therapy. Follow-up brain MRI performed 1 week later showed complete resolution of the abnormal signal and enhancement in the same region. Although EPC caused by NKH occurs rarely, it may result in an MRI abnormality of subcortical hypointensity on SWI and T2WI with leptomeningeal and cortical enhancement, which may be misinterpreted as other brain pathologies. Rapidly recognition is important because timely treatment with hydration and correction of hyperglycemia can lead to better outcome. We recommend such cases of metabolic disorder (such as hyperglycemia) for early consideration, particularly in the elderly.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-227
Number of pages3
JournalAnnals of Indian Academy of Neurology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2018



  • Epilepsia partialis continua
  • magnetic resonance imaging
  • nonketotic hyperglycemia
  • susceptibility-weighted image

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology

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