J Korean Radiol Soc.  2006 Jun;54(6):453-458. 10.3348/jkrs.2006.54.6.453.

Diffusion-Weighted MR Imaging in Acute Wernicke's Encephalopathy Associated with Pseudomembranous Colitis: A Case Report and Review of the Literature

  • 1Department of Radiology, Chung-Ang University Medical Center, Korea. hyeonyu@cau.ac.kr
  • 2Department of Neurology, Chung-Ang University Medical Center, Korea.


Wernicke's encephalopathy is a common complication of thiamine deficiency among chronic alcoholics. However, there have been few reports about MR imaging findings, including the diffusion-weighted changes of this neurologic disorder, in nonalcoholic patients. We present here a rare case of acute Wernicke's encephalopathy that developed in a patient who received prolonged total parenteral nutrition for his pseudomembranous colitis. The MR imaging, including the diffusion-weighted imaging, was performed at the onset of disease and during follow-up. The diagnosis was made by the characteristic MR imaging findings and it was supported by the clinical features. The initial and follow-up MR imaging findings with diffusion-weighted imaging changes are described and correlated with the clinical status.


Brain, diseases; Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging; Magnetic resonance (MR) diffusion study
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