Neurological Sciences

, Volume 34, Issue 7, pp 1249–1250 | Cite as

Myasthenia gravis developing in an HIV-negative patient with Kaposi’s sarcoma

  • Vittorio Mantero
  • Maria Mascolo
  • Monica Bandettini di Poggio
  • Claudia Caponnetto
  • Matteo Pardini
Letter to the Editor


Myasthenia gravis is a disorder of neuromuscular transmission caused by autoimmune mechanisms. We reported a possible association between seropositive myasthenia gravis and Kaposi’s sarcoma in a HIV-negative subject and the observed interactions between the treatment regimen for these two conditions. A 62-year-old man came to our attention for ocular myasthenia gravis. He suffered from a classic form of Kaposi’s sarcoma since about 1 year. When myasthenic symptoms worsened, the patient was started on prednisone and azathioprine. The patient had a significant worsening of Kaposi’s sarcoma, so prednisone and azathioprine were reduced and he was treated with vinblastine, with improvement both in dermatologic than in neurological symptomatology. We propose some considerations: the potential correlation between Kaposi’s sarcoma and myasthenia gravis through immunological mechanism; myasthenia gravis as a paraneoplastic manifestation of Kaposi’s sarcoma, and the role of an antitumoral agent as a treatment for both the conditions.


Myasthenia gravis Kaposi’s sarcoma Paraneoplastic syndromes Catharanthus roseus Vinblastine 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vittorio Mantero
    • 1
    • 2
  • Maria Mascolo
    • 2
  • Monica Bandettini di Poggio
    • 2
    • 3
  • Claudia Caponnetto
    • 2
  • Matteo Pardini
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of NeurosciencesNiguarda Ca’ Granda HospitalMilanItaly
  2. 2.Department of Neurosciences, Ophthalmology and GeneticsUniversity of GenoaGenoaItaly
  3. 3.Neuromuscular Rehabilitation Center, La Colletta HospitalGenoaItaly

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