Dr. Daniel Cameron: Inside Lyme Podcast

Young child with a “false brain tumor” due to Lyme disease

I will be discussing a case involving a 9-year-old boy with a pseudotumor cerebri due to Lyme disease

This case was described by Ezequiel  and colleagues  in the journal BMJ Case Rep (2018).

Pseudotumor cerebri means “false brain tumor” because its symptoms are similar to those caused by brain tumors. It’s also known as idiopathic intracranial hypertension.

The boy was admitted to the hospital with “daily pulsatile frontotemporal headache, pallor, photophobia and phonophobia, without night awakening, vomiting or visual changes,”  wrote the authors.

The doctors initially suspected a pseudotumor cerebri.  The tests were negative.

Instead, the doctors diagnosed Lyme disease by a spinal tap and blood tests.  He was prescribed 3 weeks of intravenous ceftriaxone.  His pseudotumor cerebri resolved.

  1. Jozefowicz-Korczynska M, Zamyslowska-Szmytke E, Piekarska A, Rosiak O. Vertigo and Severe Balance Instability as Symptoms of Lyme Disease-Literature Review and Case Report. Front Neurol. 2019 Nov 12;10:1172.

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Dr. Cameron is a Lyme disease expert and the author “Inside Lyme: An expert’s guide to the science of Lyme disease.” He has been treating adolescents and adults for more than 30 years.

Please remember that the advice given is general and not intended as specific advice as to any particular patient. If you require specific advice, then please seek that advice from an experienced professional.

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