, Volume 47, Issue 8, pp 586–590 | Cite as

Posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome: a possible late interaction between cytotoxic agents and general anaesthesia

  • P. S. Rangi
  • W. J. Partridge
  • E. S. Newlands
  • A. D. Waldman
Diagnostic Neuroradiology


A 49-year-old woman who had previously received treatment with cytotoxic drugs for metastatic gestational trophoblastic disease (GTD) presented with a witnessed tonic–clonic seizure, headache, confusion and blindness, 6 days after the uneventful administration of a general anaesthetic and 2 months after cessation of chemotherapy. Magnetic resonance imaging showed relatively symmetrical, subcortical, white matter abnormalities, predominantly affecting the occipital, posterior temporal and parietal lobes and the cerebellum. T2-dependent abnormalities and elevated regional apparent diffusion coefficient were present in a pattern typical for posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome (PRES). The clinical and radiological manifestations were resolved completely with supportive therapy. This case of PRES may be a late complication of gemcitabine or cisplatin therapy precipitated by a general anaesthetic, or associated electrolyte or blood pressure disturbance.


Leukoencephalopathy Cytotoxic Anaesthetic PRLS PRES 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. S. Rangi
    • 1
  • W. J. Partridge
    • 1
  • E. S. Newlands
    • 2
  • A. D. Waldman
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of ImagingCharing Cross HospitalLondonUK
  2. 2.Department of OncologyCharing Cross HospitalLondonUK
  3. 3.Dementia Research GroupInstitute of NeurologyLondonUK

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