Fatal B-cell Lymphoma Following Chronic Lymphocytic Inflammation With Pontine Perivascular Enhancement Responsive to Steroids

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Abstract

IMPORTANCE

Recent reports on chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids (CLIPPERS) suggest that patients who have a relapse respond very well and that disease progression can be avoided if timely corticosteroid therapy is started. We report on a well-documented patient who presented with clinical, radiological, and pathological characteristics of CLIPPERS and who had an unfavorable outcome.

OBSERVATIONS

We present the clinical, imaging, laboratory, brain biopsy, and autopsy findings of a 57-year-old male patient with CLIPPERS who repeatedly responded well to high-dose corticosteroids. During follow-up, however, treatment failed, and he had a biopsy-confirmed diagnosis of lymphomatoid granulomatosis that evolved into fatal B-cell lymphoma of the central nervous system.

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE

The clinical and imaging features of CLIPPERS include an abundance of differential diagnoses, and the follow-up periods of the described cases classified as CLIPPERS have been limited. Therefore, the question remains whether CLIPPERS is an actual new disease entity or represents a syndrome that includes different overlapping diseases and their prestages. Our case report shows that a typical presentation of CLIPPERS does not uniformly imply a favorable outcome, even when timely treatment regimens have been given.

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