A morphometric study of the vagus nerve in amyotropic lateral sclerosis with circulatory collapse.

Autor(es): Shimizu Toshio; Hayashi Michiyuki; Kawata Akihiro; Mizutani Toshio; Watabe Kazuhiko; Matsubara Shiro

Resumo: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) shows peculiar abnormalities of the autonomic nervous system, including sympathetic hyperactivity, which might result in sudden death. In general, the sympathetic hyperactivity could be caused by disruption of vagal inhibition. Our objective was to evaluate the vagus nerve morphometrically in autopsy cases of ALS with sympathetic hyperactivity and circulatory collapse (CC). We investigated 10 autopsied ALS patients, six of whom had exhibited autonomic storms or CC. We also examined 10 patients without ALS as controls, and one patient with Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) who died from CC, for comparison. After obtaining the visceral branch of the left vagus nerve at necropsy, we analyzed the density of the myelinated and unmyelinated fibers, and the fiber diameter distribution for each fiber. Results showed that the densities of both myelinated and unmyelinated fibers in ALS patients with or without CC were not significantly different from those in control patients. In contrast, the GBS patient showed marked reduction in the whole myelinated and large unmyelinated fiber density. In conclusion, the autonomic storms or CC due to sympathetic hyperactivity in ALS could not be ascribed to the deafferentation of the baroreflex, and more central neural pathophysiology should be investigated.

Imprenta: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, v. 12, n. 5, p. 356-362, 2011

Identificador do objeto digital: 10.3109/17482968.2011.566342

Descritores: Guillain-Barre Syndrome - Cytopathology ; Guillain-Barre Syndrome - Pathogenesis ; Guillain-Barre Syndrome - Clinical examination

Data de publicação: 2011