Neurologic Complications of Transplantation

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Abstract

Purpose of Review: This article describes the diagnosis and management of neurologic problems during hematopoietic cell and solid organ transplantation using time elapsed since transplantation as a guide to expected complications, including drug toxicities, infections, strokes, autoimmune phenomena, disease recurrence, and secondary neoplasms.

Recent Findings: Growing clinical experience in the neurology of transplantation has led to appreciation of the diverse clinical and radiographic spectrum of calcineurin inhibitor–related posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome (PRES) and progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy. Novel autoimmune phenomena illustrate the delicate balance between adequate immunosuppression and necessary host inflammatory defenses that can lead to organ rejection. The spectrum of infectious complications has changed with the evolution of new conditioning regimens.

Summary: Neurologic problems remain an important source of morbidity and mortality, both in the immediate transplantation period and for years after the procedure. As perioperative management has reduced the incidence of acute infections, graft versus host disease, and organ rejection, problems of long-term survivors require neurologic input into multidisciplinary management of chronic neurologic conditions impacting quality of life.

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