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Neurosyphilis and neuro-AIDS 

Neurosyphilis and neuro-AIDS

Chapter:
Neurosyphilis and neuro-AIDS
Author(s):

Hadi Manji

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199204854.003.0241104
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date: 27 June 2017

Invasion of the central nervous system occurs early in the course of syphilis infection. Neurosyphilis causes meningitis, myeloradiculopathy due to pachymeningitis, and gummatous cord and brain lesions; endarteritis may cause infarction.

Clinical features—these are protean: neurosyphilis should always be considered in the diagnosis of neurological disorders without a convincing explanation, including (1) stroke—especially in young patients; (2) ocular abnormalities—e.g. optic neuritis, choroidoretinitis, pupillary abnormalities; (3) unexplained cranial nerve disease, including sensorineural deafness and vertigo; (4) dementia—low-grade meningo-encephalitis is associated with generalized changes in the brain and occasionally with frontotemporal dementia; (5) tabes dorsalis—a sensory ataxia caused by disease of the dorsal roots, ganglia and posterior columns....

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