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Lumbosacral multiradiculopathy responsive to antibiotic therapy: description of four patients with lumbar spondylosis and a superimposed Lyme disease


Lyme disease is a diffuse zoonosis caused by spirochaetes of the Borrelia burgdorferi species complex. Neurological manifestations of the disease, involving central or peripheral nervous system, are common. This study describes four consecutive patients with an MRI-proven lumbosacral spondylosis, who complained of progressive worsening of symptoms in the last months in which serological evaluation suggested a superimposed B. Burgdorferi infection. Four patients, all from the Lazio region, were admitted to the Department of Neurology. Extensive laboratory studies and clinical, anamnestic and neurophysiological evaluation were performed in all cases. In all cases, anamnesis revealed a previous diagnosis of lumbosacral foraminal stenosis. Clinical and neurophysiological findings were consistent with a lumbosacral multiradiculopathy. Considering serological evaluation suggestive of a superimposed B. burgdorferi infection a proper antibiotic therapy was started. All cases showed a marked improvement of symptoms. Clinicians should be aware that in all cases of lumbosacral multiradiculopathy, even if a mechanical cause is documented, B. burgdorferi may be a simply treatable condition.

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