A previously healthy 27-year-old man was brought to hospital after been found late at night confused, agitated and talking incoherently. He represented 12 days later with focal seizures, progressing to anarthria and encephalopathy. MR scan of brain showed diffuse cerebral oedema and his plasma ammonia was >2000 µmol/L (12–55 µmol/L). He developed refractory status epilepticus and subsequently died. Genetic analysis identified an ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC) gene mutation on the X chromosome. We discuss this atypical presentation of OTC deficiency as a rare but treatable cause of hyperammonaemic encephalopathy.
- metabolic disease
- clinical neurology
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Contributors ED conceived of and drafted the manuscript. JMG, CG, MWA, PB, ET and EC reviewed, revised and edited the manuscript.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned. Externally peer reviewed by Elaine Murphy, London, UK.
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