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01.12.2016 | Case report | Ausgabe 1/2016 Open Access

BMC Cancer 1/2016

An uncommon manifestation of paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration in a patient with high grade urothelial, carcinoma with squamous differentiation: A case report and literature review

BMC Cancer > Ausgabe 1/2016
Yaofeng Zhu, Shouzhen Chen, Songyu Chen, Jing Song, Fan Chen, Hu Guo, Zhenhua Shang, Yong Wang, Changkuo Zhou, Benkang Shi
Wichtige Hinweise

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interest.

Authors’ contributions

YZ and SZC collected the clinical data and drafted the manuscript. SYC and JS revised the manuscript. FC, HG, ZS and YW carried out the clinical management of the patient. CZ carried out the pathological diagnosis and immunohistochemical staining. BS designed the manuscript and tables. All authors have read and approved the manuscript.



Paraneoplastic neurological syndromes (PNS) are rare disorders associated with malignant tumours, which are triggered by autoimmune reactions. Paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration (PCD) is the PNS type most commonly associated with ovarian and breast cancer. Two bladder cancers manifesting in PCD were previously reported. However, the cancers in these cases had poor outcomes.

Case presentation

Here, we present a 68-year old man with history of high-grade papillary urothelial carcinoma of the bladder. The patient suffered from persistent cerebellar ataxia accompanied by bladder cancer recurrence five months after transurethral resection of the bladder tumour (TURBt). Laboratory screening for the specific antibodies of paraneoplastic neurological syndromes revealed no positive results. Symptoms were not remitted after a 7-day-course of high-dose glucocorticoid therapy. To our surprise, the patient recovered fully after laparoscopic radical cystectomy. Postoperative pathology revealed that surgical specimens were urothelial carcinoma in situ (CIS) and squamous cell carcinoma of the bladder. The patient remained asymptomatic and there was no evidence of recurrence after the followup period of 11 months.


To our knowledge, this is the third report of PCD in a patient with bladder cancer. This case showed that tumour resection cured the PCD. To assist clinical evaluation and management, literature regarding basic PNS characteristics and bladder cancers was reviewed.
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