Clinical features and treatment outcomes of seronegative pediatric autoimmune encephalitis

Sangbo Lee, Heung Dong Kim, Joon Soo Lee, Hoon Chul Kang, Se Hee Kim

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Background and Purpose New diagnostic criteria for pediatric autoimmune encephalitis (AIE) have been introduced recently. A substantial proportion of cases of pediatric AIE are diagnosed as seronegative based on these criteria, and so the clinical characteristics of this group remain to be investigated. Methods This study included 46 pediatric patients younger than 18 years with suspected AIE. Clinical features, laboratory or radiological findings, and treatment outcomes were compared between seronegative and seropositive patients. Results Nine (19.6%) of the 46 patients were diagnosed as seropositive AIE. All of the patients with seropositive AIE had anti-N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antibodies. Commonly identified neuropsychiatric symptoms were altered mental status, cognitive dysfunction, seizure, speech dysfunction, and psychotic disorder in both the seronegative and seropositive groups. Immunotherapy produced favorable treatment outcomes in both the seropositive (n=7, 77.8%) and seronegative (n=35, 94.6%) AIE patients. Treatment outcomes for first-line immunotherapy were better in seronegative AIE than seropositive AIE patients (p=0.003), and hence a smaller proportion of seronegative patients required second-line treatment (p=0.015). Conclusions Pediatric seronegative AIE patients showed clinical presentations similar to those of seropositive AIE patients, with favorable treatment outcomes after immunotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)300-306
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Clinical Neurology (Korea)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Apr

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Korean Neurological Association.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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