Fatal coma in a young adult due to late-onset urea cycle deficiency presenting with a prolonged seizure: a case reportReportar como inadecuado

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Journal of Medical Case Reports

, 9:267

First Online: 23 November 2015Received: 07 July 2015Accepted: 21 October 2015DOI: 10.1186-s13256-015-0741-2

Cite this article as: Alameri, M., Shakra, M. & Alsaadi, T. J Med Case Reports 2015 9: 267. doi:10.1186-s13256-015-0741-2


IntroductionUnexplained hyperammonemic coma in adults can be a medical dilemma in the absence of triggering factors and known comorbidities. Ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency presents most commonly with hyperammonemic coma. Although a rare disorder, ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency is the most common of the urea cycle disorders, which can occur both in children, and less commonly, in adults. The urea cycle disorder is usually acquired as an X-linked trait, and very rarely, similar to our reported case, may be acquired as a -new- mutation. Mutations that lead to later-onset presentations may lead to life-threatening disease and may be unrecognized, particularly when the first clinical symptoms occur in adulthood.

Case presentationWe report the case of a previously healthy 17-year-old white man who developed a prolonged seizure and a rapid decline in mental status leading to coma over a 3-day period. Analysis of the OTC gene showed a 119G variant, which was identified in exon 2 of the OTC gene by sequencing.

ConclusionsA diagnosis of ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency should be considered in adult patients who present with unexplained hyperammonemic coma and for all adult patients presenting with cryptogenic new-onset seizure and laboratory finding of elevated blood ammonia levels. This reported case highlights the importance of early recognition of this potentially reversible cause of life-threatening encephalopathy, as timely recognition and appropriate treatment can be lifesaving.

KeywordsOrnithine transcarbamylase deficiency OTC Hyperammonemia Coma  Download fulltext PDF

Autor: Majid Alameri - Mustafa Shakra - Taoufik Alsaadi

Fuente: https://link.springer.com/

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