Reversible dementia due to Neurocysticercosis: improvement of the racemose type with antihistamines

Infection of the human central nervous system (CNS) by the larvae of Taenia solium, termed neurocysticercosis (NCC), is endemic in most developing countries, where it is a major cause of acquired seizures and other neurological morbidity, including neuropsychiatric symptoms. However, despite its frequent manifestation, some findings, such as cognitive impairment and dementia, remain poorly understood. Less commonly, NCC may affect the ventricular system and subarachnoid spaces and this form is known as extraparenchymal neurocysticercosis. A particular presentation of the subarachnoid form is called racemose cysticercosis, which has a progressive pattern, frequently leads to hydrocephalus and can be life-threatening. Here we review a case of the racemose variety of cysticercosis, complicated by hydrocephalus and reversible dementia, with remission of symptoms after derivation and that remained stable with use of dexchlorpheniramine. We discuss the challenges in diagnosis, imaging findings, treatment and follow-up of this disease.