‘Query encephalitis’ is a common neurological consultation in hospitalised patients. Identifying the syndrome is only part of the puzzle. Although historically encephalitis has been almost synonymous with infection, we increasingly recognise parainfectious or postinfectious as well as other immune-mediated causes. We must also distinguish encephalitis from other causes of encephalopathy, including systemic infection, metabolic derangements, toxins, inherited metabolic disorders, hypoxia, trauma and vasculopathies. Here, we review the most important differential diagnoses (mimics) of patients presenting with an encephalitic syndrome and highlight some unusual presentations (chameleons) of infectious encephalitis.
- autoimmune encephalitis
- cns infection
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.
Contributors MT and NWSD contributed equally to the drafting of this 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.
Patient consent for publication Obtained.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned. Externally peer reviewed by Tom Solomon, Liverpool, UK, and Mark Ellul, Liverpool, UK.
Read the full text or download the PDF:
Other content recommended for you
- Cortical abnormalities on MRI: what a neurologist should know
- Autoimmune encephalitis: proposed best practice recommendations for diagnosis and acute management
- Diagnosis and treatment of viral encephalitis
- Encephalitis: diagnosis, management and recent advances in the field of encephalitides
- An unusual presentation of herpes simplex encephalitis with negative PCR
- Pharmacovigilance during treatment of multiple sclerosis: early recognition of CNS complications
- Thymoma associated paraneoplastic encephalitis (TAPE), a potential cause of limbic encephalitis
- Posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome (PRES): diagnosis and management
- A cause of encephalopathy not to be missed