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Myeloradiculoneuropathy due to vitamin B12 deficiency: an unusual clinical and radiological presentation


A 42-year-old man from rural India presented with asymmetric progressive paraparesis mimicking compressive dorsal myelopathy, followed by distal upper limb, truncal and neck-flexor weakness, further complicated by acute urinary retention. His sensory deficits were marked by loss of joint position sense (JPS) and graded loss of vibration sense, along with a definite sensory level. Deep tendon jerks were hypo-to-areflexic, plantar was bilaterally extensor. He had become less attentive and occasionally failed to keep track with conversations. A syndromic diagnosis of myeloradiculoneuropathy with cognitive impairments was made. Further tailored investigations revealed vitamin B12 deficiency with positive anti-parietal cell antibody. Diagnosis of subacute combined cord degeneration (SACD) was confirmed. Neuro-imaging revealed intramedullary intensity changes only along lateral aspect of spinal cord instead of characteristic posterior involvement. Following parenteral vitamin B12 supplementation, patient started showing improvement in motor power and subjective sensory symptoms. His bladder symptoms persisted initially, however recovered finally after 6 months.

  • spinal cord
  • pernicious anemia
  • neuroimaging
  • vitamins and supplements

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