BMJ Case Reports 2013; doi:10.1136/bcr-2012-008073

Syphilitic limbic encephalitis revealed by status epilepticus

  1. Mohammed Faouzi Belahsen
  1. Department of Neurology, UH Hassan II, Fez, Fez, Morocco
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ilhame Derouich, dr.ilhame{at}


Limbic encephalitis (LE) is an inflammatory disorder of the limbic system; the clinical features are diverse, characterised by the development of neuropsychiatric symptoms, its aetiologies are various; syphilis is a rare entity. We report the case of a 50-year-old-man with syphilitic LE revealed by an inaugural status epilepticus. Diagnosis was made considering clinical, biological and radiological arguments. The patient received specific treatment for neurosyphilis. Evolution was marked by improved neuropsychological symptoms, the negativity of venereal disease research laboratory test in blood and cerebrospinal fluid and regression of the mesiotemporal signal abnormalities on MRI.

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