Acta Neurochirurgica

, Volume 156, Issue 2, pp 429–430 | Cite as

Brissaud-Sicard syndrome caused by a diffuse brainstem glioma. A rare differential diagnosis of hemifacial spasm

  • Pawel Tacik
  • Michael Krasnianski
  • Alex AlfieriEmail author
  • Dirk Dressler
Letter to the editor - Brain Tumors

Dear Editor,

Brissaud-Sicard syndrome is a pontine-crossed syndrome, which obligatorily comprises ipsilateral facial cramps and contralateral hemiparesis. The syndrome was first described by the French physician Adolphe Gubler in 1856 [2]. However, the syndrome bears the name of two other French physicians, Edouard Brissaud and Jean Athanase Sicard. In 1908, they provided a very detailed clinical description of three patients, who were claimed to suffer from syphilis with secondary cerebro-vascular involvement. The authors argued that there was a lesion in the pyramidal tract in the basilar pons with additional irritation of the intrapontine fibres of the facial nerve. No post-mortem examination was performed in these cases [1].

The constellation of the obligatory symptoms is very rare and has been reported only twice in patients suffering from pontine strokes since the original publication [4].

Hemifacial spasm is a common movement disorder that is caused by the mechanical irritation...


Facial Nerve Facial Muscle Hemifacial Spasm Brainstem Glioma French Physician 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Conflicts of interest



  1. 1.
    Brissaud E, Sicard J (1908) A L’hémispasme facial alterne. Le Presse médicale 16:234–236Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Gubler A (1856) De l’Hémiplégie alterneen visage comme signe et lésion de la protuberance annulaire et comme preuve de la décussation des nerfs faciaux. Gazette hebdomadaire de medicine et de chirurgie 3:749–816, 789–792, 811–816Google Scholar
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    Iijima K, Horiguchi K, Yoshimoto Y (2013) Microvascular decompression of the root emerging zone for hemifacial spasm: evaluation by fusion magnetic resonance imaging and technical considerations. Acta Neurochir 155:855–862PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Krasnianski M, Neudecker S, Zierz S (2004) Classical crossed pontine syndromes. Fortschritte der Neurologie Psychiatrie 72:460–468PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Pawlowski M, Gess B, Evers S (2013) The Babinski-2 sign in hemifacial spasm. Mov Disord 28:1298–1300PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    Yaltho TC, Jankovic J (2011) The many faces of hemifacial spasm: differential diagnosis of unilateral facial spasms. Mov Disord 26:1582–1592PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    Yamakami I, Oka N, Higuchi Y (2007) Hyperactivity of the facial nucleus produced by chronic electrical stimulation in rats. J Clin Neurosci 14:459–463PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pawel Tacik
    • 1
  • Michael Krasnianski
    • 2
    • 4
  • Alex Alfieri
    • 3
    Email author
  • Dirk Dressler
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of NeurologyHannover Medical SchoolHannoverGermany
  2. 2.Department of NeurologyMarienhospitalKevelaerGermany
  3. 3.Department of Neurosurgery and Spine SurgeryRuppiner-KlinikenNeuruppinGermany
  4. 4.Department of NeurologyMartin Luther University of Halle-WittenBergHalle (Saale)Germany

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