Understanding auto-immune encephalitis in the ICU
Encephalitis is a severe neurological syndrome that presents as rapidly progressive encephalopathy caused by brain inflammation, with varying combinations of fever, focal central nervous system (CNS) findings, new-onset seizures, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pleocytosis, and neuroimaging and electroencephalography (EEG) abnormalities . It is associated with a multitude of etiologies, including viral infections , but in recent years, an increasing number of autoimmune encephalitides (AE) characterized by specific autoantibodies has been recognized . Intensivists should be aware of AE and associated complications because patients frequently necessitate ICU care, specific therapy during several weeks, and because a favorable outcome is observed in most cases.
When to suspect autoimmune encephalitis in ICU?
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflicts of interest
RS received grants from the French Ministry of Health, the French society of intensive care medicine (SRLF) and the European society of intensive care medicine (ESICM), and lecture fees from Baxter. The other authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
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