Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) presenting as acute transverse myelitis with positive aquaporin 4 antibodies
  1. Katherine Thornley1 and
  2. Carlo Canepa2
  1. 1General Medicine, James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Great Yarmouth, UK
  2. 2Stroke and Neurology, James Paget University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Great Yarmouth, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Katherine Thornley; katherine.thornley{at}


An 80-year-old, previously healthy patient presents with acute transverse myelitis with sensory level at T8. The MRI scan of the spinal cord showed longitudinal extensive transverse myelitis, and she tested positive for aquaporin 4 antibodies in serum. She received treatment with intravenous and oral steroids, with no improvement and then underwent plasma exchange. She was then started on azathioprine for prevention of relapses, while continuing physiotherapy and occupational therapy. Eventually, she was transferred to a specialised spinal cord centre for long-term rehabilitation.

  • neurology
  • neuroimaging
  • spinal cord

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • Contributors KT and CC are coauthors of this case report, with CC being the lead consultant in the patient's care.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.