Update: Neurocysticercosis

Twenty-six patients with cysticercosis of the brain parenchyma were treated with the antihelmintic agent praziquantel (50 mg per kilogram of body weight daily for 15 days). During treatment a strong inflammatory reaction occurred, as evidenced by increased protein and cells in the cerebrospinal fluid. This finding correlated with headache, exacerbation of neurologic symptoms, and edema and inflammation around cystic lesions. After three months of treatment all patients had improved clinically, and 13 (50 per cent) were asymptomatic. The total number of cysts on CT scans had decreased from 152 at the beginning of treatment to 51, and the mean diameter of cysts was reduced by 72 per cent. CT scans showed improvement in 25 of the 26 patients, with total remission of all cysts in nine. Seventeen control patients followed with CT studies for a mean of 9 +/- 2 months had no spontaneous remission of lesions, and in many cases the scans showed worsening during the observation period. Our results indicate that praziquantel is effective in cysticercosis of the brain parenchyma.


Sotelo J, Escobedo F, Rodriguez-Carbajal J, Torres B, Rubio-Donnadieu F. Therapy of parenchymal brain cysticercosis with praziquantel. N Engl J Med. 1984 Apr 19;310(16):1001-7. PubMed PMID: 6708975.

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