Journal of Neuro-Oncology

, Volume 78, Issue 1, pp 49–51 | Cite as

Second primary tumor in anti-Ma1/2-positive paraneoplastic limbic encephalitis

  • T. Leyhe
  • R. Schüle
  • F. Schwärzler
  • T. Gasser
  • T. Haarmeier
Clinical-patient studies


Memory loss can be a symptom of paraneoplastic limbic encephalitis (PLE) a neuropsychiatric disorder associated mostly with small-cell lung cancer and anti-Hu antibodies or with testicular tumors and anti-Ma2 antibodies. We present the case of a patient with temporal coincidence of beginning cognitive decline and diagnosis of a carcinoma of the prostate in whom we diagnosed anti-Ma1/Ma2-positive PLE. The tumor had been completely resected but memory impairment further deteriorated. As the effective treatment of the cancer is considered as the most efficient treatment of a paraneoplastic neurological syndrome (PNS) a second neoplasia was suspected in the patient. By the aid of whole body positron emission tomography with 18-fluorine fluoro-2-deoxy-glucose (FDG-PET) an adenocarcinoma of the cecum could be detected. Two months after surgery anti-Ma antibodies were negative. We conclude that a second neoplasia should be considered, if effective cancer treatment does not lead to improvement or stabilisation of a PNS. Tumor search should be exhaustive and include PET when conventional imaging fails to show a malignancy.


adenocarcinoma of the cecum carcinoma of the prostate dementia paraneoplastic limbic encephalitis 


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We thank M. Reimold, PET-Center of the University of Tübingen, for kindly providing the PET images of the described patient.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. Leyhe
    • 1
    • 4
  • R. Schüle
    • 2
  • F. Schwärzler
    • 1
  • T. Gasser
    • 2
  • T. Haarmeier
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry and PsychotherapyUniversity of TübingenTübingenGermany
  2. 2.Department of Neurodegenerative diseases, Hertie Institute of Clinical Brain ResearchUniversity of Tübingen TübingenGermany
  3. 3.Department of General Neurology, Hertie Institute of Clinical Brain ResearchUniversity of Tübingen TübingenGermany
  4. 4.Department of Psychiatry and PsychotherapyUniversity of TübingenTübingenGermany

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