Skip to main content
  • Poster presentation
  • Open access
  • Published:

30 year old woman with possible Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease initially presenting with psychiatric symptoms: a case report


Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease is a rare neurodegenerative disorder that belongs to the so called transmissible spongiform encephalopathies. Four types of the disease are recognized today: The sporadic form, responsible for over 80% of all cases, the familial, responsible for about 10% of cases, the iatrogenic and finally the variant form.

Materials and methods

We report a case of a thirty year old female Caucasian woman initially presenting with psychiatric symptoms.


The patient's problems had begun six months prior to hospital admission with symptoms of disorientation in place and time and behavioral disturbances. She was treated initially as a psychiatric outpatient receiving medication. After 4 months of unsuccessful treatment she was hospitalized and subjected to 16 E.C.T. sessions. About 2 months after E.C.T., the patient was admitted to our hospital with neurological symtomatology (gait and speech disturbances). Biochemical examination, E.E.G and lumbar puncture (including protein 14-3-3 assay) were inconclusive, while brain MRI revealed brain atrophy and high signal intensity in the region of basal ganglia, imaging suggestive of Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease. 22 months after initial presentation the patient is in a state of akinetic mutism.


To our knowledge this is the first report presenting in Greece concerning possible Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease in such a young person. The initial presentation with pure psychiatric symptoms is also of interest, while the time elapsed since the presentation of neurological symtomatology is considered to be quite long.


  1. Zerr I, Poser S: Clinical Diagnosis and Differential Diagnosis of CJD and vCJD. APMIS. 2002, 110: 88-98. 10.1034/j.1600-0463.2002.100111.x.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Beisel CE, Morens DM: Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease and the Acquired and Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathies. Clinical Infectious Diseases. 2004, 38: 697-704. 10.1086/381028.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Collins SJ, Lawson VA, Masters CL: Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies. Lancet. 2004, 363: 51-61. 10.1016/S0140-6736(03)15171-9.

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Van Everbroeck B, Dobbeleir I, De Waele M, De Deyn P, Martin J-J, Cras P: Differential diagnosis of 201 possible Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease patients. J Neurol. 2004, 251: 298-304. 10.1007/s00415-004-0311-9.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Papaslanis, T., Karakasis, P., Hatzimanolis, A. et al. 30 year old woman with possible Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease initially presenting with psychiatric symptoms: a case report. Ann Gen Psychiatry 7 (Suppl 1), S122 (2008).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • DOI: