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Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease as a cause of dementia
  1. Rasha Nakhleh1,
  2. Sophia Tenaye Tessema2 and
  3. Abdullahi Mahgoub3
  1. 1Internal Medicine and Geriatrics, Oregon Health and Science University, Portland, Oregon, USA
  2. 2College of Human Medicine, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA
  3. 3Internal Medicine, Hurley Medical Center, Flint, Michigan, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Rasha Nakhleh; nakhlehr{at}


Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is a rapidly progressive, fatal neurodegenerative disorder belonging to the family of transmissible spongiform encephalopathies. The disease is believed to be caused by an abnormal isoform of a cellular glycoprotein known as the prion protein. Our patient is an 84-year-old Caucasian man who presented to the geriatric clinic for evaluation of short-term memory loss and decreased concentration which started 3 months prior to initial evaluation. Rapid progression of dementia demonstrated by severe impairment in tasks with a predominantly visual component, including visual scanning, perceptual reasoning and visual spatial processing. Diagnosis of CJD was determined by characteristic ribboning on brain MRI as well as notable real-time quaking-induced conversion on cerebrospinal fluid.

  • general practice / family medicine
  • memory disorders
  • neuroimaging

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  • Twitter @DrNakhleh, @sophiatessema, @abadmahgoub

  • Contributors All the authors made substantial contributions in planning the scope of the case report, collecting, interpreting and reporting data in preparation for this manuscript. STT performed literature review, interviewed and gained the perspective of the patient’s wife, and wrote the manuscript. STT, AM and RN read, revised and approved the final manuscript.

  • 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.

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

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