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Open access

Yuji Kadowaki, Mitsuru Nishiyama, Makoto Nakamura, Hiroyuki Morisaka, Shimpei Fujimoto, Yoshio Terada, and Kensuke Kojima

Summary

Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) is a rare disease characterized by the proliferation of abnormal Langerhans cells in various tissues and organs, including bone, skin, the lungs, and the pituitary gland. Hypothalamic–pituitary lesions in LCH often cause central diabetes insipidus (CDI), but the natural course of LCH in the CNS remains to be elucidated. In this study, we report an interesting case of altered LCH lesions in the CNS from the pituitary to the hypothalamus in a 45-year-old woman. She developed symptoms of polyuria and was diagnosed with CDI with lymphocytic hypophysitis due to an enlarged pituitary gland with stalk thickening shown on MRI. Short-term glucocorticoid therapy cured pituitary enlargement, but serum prolactin levels gradually increased. Six years later, the immunohistological findings of a skin biopsy revealed positive for leukocyte common antigen, S-100, and CD1a expression, indicating a diagnosis of LCH. MRI revealed a new lesion in the hypothalamus without pituitary involvement, likely due to LCH. Chemotherapy improved LCH lesions both in the skin and hypothalamus, but therapy was stopped on the patient’s request. Although adult-onset LCH is rare, it should be considered as a differential diagnosis in cases of CDI as the primary disease. The clinical course in the present case indicated that LCH lesion was altered from pituitary to suprasellar extension; where such changes were observed, the possibility of LCH should be considered.

Learning points

  • Diagnosing the primary disease of CDI is challenging; therefore, careful observation is necessary in pathologically unknown cases.

  • Enhanced MRI should be performed in cases with suspected hypothalamic lesions, such as elevated serum prolactin.

  • Although adult-onset LCH is rare, it should be considered a differential diagnosis in cases of CDI as the primary disease.

  • The direction of changing CNS lesion from pituitary to suprasellar extension might be a unique MRI finding in LCH.

Open access

Fumiaki Kawano, Tadato Yonekawa, Hideki Yamaguchi, Nobuhiro Shibata, Kousei Tashiro, Makoto Ikenoue, Shun Munakata, Kazuhiro Higuchi, Hiroyuki Tanaka, Yuichiro Sato, Ayumu Hosokawa, Shinsuke Takeno, Kunihide Nakamura, and Atsushi Nanashima

Summary

A 54-year-old woman was referred to our hospital with a cervical tumor. CT revealed a cervical tumor extending to the upper mediastinum, tracheal deviation and tumor infiltration in the cervical vessels. She was followed-up because no diagnosis of malignancy was made by cytology. However, 2 months later, a CT scan showed enlargement of the tumor and tracheal stenosis, and a surgical biopsy was performed and she was diagnosed with anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC). The tracheal tube with tracheal stenosis could not be removed due to the rapid growth of the tumor, necessitating management by mechanical ventilation. Due to the difficulty of surgical resection, she was treated with lenvatinib. A lenvatinib solution was made and administered via a nasogastric tube. After lenvatinib treatment, the tumor volume decreased and the tracheal stenosis improved. The tracheal tube was removed and oral intake became possible. She was discharged and received ambulatory lenvatinib therapy. The tumor was significantly reduced in size, but gradually grew and was exposed through the cervical wound 6 months later. Esophageal perforation occurred 10 months after the start of treatment. Lenvatinib was re-administered via a nasogastric tube. Eleven months later, the patient died of massive bleeding from the exposed cervical tumor. Patients with advanced ATC may require management with mechanical ventilation for airway stenosis or with a nasogastric tube for esophageal stenosis and perforation. We experienced a case in which lenvatinib was safely administered via a nasogastric tube while performing mechanical ventilation.

Learning points:

  • An anaplastic thyroid cancer patient under mechanical ventilator management was treated with lenvatinib via a nasogastric tube.

  • The lenvatinib solution can easily be prepared and administered via a nasogastric tube.

  • The lenvatinib solution was effective for a patient with difficulty in oral intake.

  • Lenvatinib could also improve the prognosis of an anaplastic thyroid cancer patient with severe airway and esophageal trouble.