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Observations placeholder

Hallucinations from Encephalitis



Type of Spiritual Experience


Number of hallucinations: 1


The worying thing about this paper is that they did not continue to find out what caused the tumour.  Cysts like this can be caused by parasites.

In effect, whatever caused the tumour probably caused the encephalitis.

Encephalomyelitis is a general term for inflammation of the brain and spinal cord, describing a number of disorders

A description of the experience

Reversible paraneoplastic encephalomyelitis associated with a benign ovarian teratoma. Taylor RB, Mason W, Kong K, Wennberg R. Division of Neurology, Toronto Hospital, University of Toronto, ON, Canada.

BACKGROUND: Paraneoplastic encephalomyelitis (PEM) is a well characterized, and typically irreversible, paraneoplastic syndrome, usually associated with small cell lung cancer or other malignancy. We describe a case of a young woman with a benign ovarian teratoma who presented with a reversible PEM.

CASE REPORT: A 24-year-old woman presented with a three week history of memory impairment, unusual behavior, personality changes, auditory hallucinations, hypersomnolence and binocular biplopia. On admission she was disoriented and inattentive with impaired short term memory. Small doses of lorazepam (1 mg), given for episodic agitation, repeatedly induced multidirectional bilateral nystagmus and a skew deviation, but her neurological examination was otherwise normal. A left-sided pelvic mass was palpable. Brain MRI pre- and post-gadolinium was normal. There was a mild CSF pleocytosis and an EEG showed minimal bilateral background activity irregularities. There were no other laboratory abnormalities. Two weeks after admission, she clinically deteriorated developing central respiratory failure and a flaccid paraplegia. Repeat MRI showed an area of increased T2 weighted signal in the medulla and three similar areas in the spinal cord. Following removal of her tumor, treatment with high dose corticosteroids and intravenous immunoglobulin, she ultimately made a full recovery. Pathology revealed the tumor to be a benign ovarian cystic teratoma.

CONCLUSIONS: This is the first report of a reversible PEM seen in association with a benign tumor, in this case a mature ovarian teratoma. Presumably, an immune response directed against neural clements of the teratoma cross-reacted with normal brain, brainstem and spinal cord antigens to cause neurologic symptoms. Tumor removal was followed by neurologic recovery.

The source of the experience


Concepts, symbols and science items



Science Items

Activities and commonsteps





Brain damage