News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Investigations Continue On Neurological Condition

Investigations Continue Into Man’s Unusual Neurological Condition

Waikato Hospital neurologists are cautioning the public against assuming a patient with an unusual neurological condition has new variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD).

Neurologist Dr Paul Timmings says he and his colleagues are querying the likelihood that the young man has CJD, a notifiable illness. They have notified the Ministry of Health of this possibility.

“We are caring for a young man who has presented with unusual progressive neurological symptoms. We consider CJD to be a possible diagnosis but this is still unconfirmed.

“There are four types of CJD including hereditary, sporadic, variant and iatrogenic. There is some overlap in the symptoms of the different forms and diagnosis on the basis of clinical symptoms alone is difficult.”

He said the hospital had carried out a number of investigations including radiological scans and diagnostic tests on blood, spinal fluid and tissue. These had been sent to Australia for further analysis and results were expected in about a fortnight.

“The test on the tonsil biopsy will give us the most definitive result but even then, because of the limitations of the tests, it is possible the diagnosis might simply change from ‘possible’ to ‘probable’.

“The only definitive way of diagnosing CJD is brain biopsy which cannot be justified given we can offer no specific treatment.

“While I acknowledge the high degree of public interest, our main concern is to provide care for this young man and to support his family through this distressing illness.”

Dr Timmings said family and staff caring for the young man were not at risk of infection as CJD was not transmissable from person to person by normal social or routine clinical contact.

“There is no evidence of infectivity in saliva, body secretions, or excreta. Patients with CJD may be safely nursed in normal hospital wards or at home with no special precautions other than normal standard infection control practices that would apply to any other patient.

“Special precautions are only needed for handling central nervous system or eye tissue and cerebrospinal fluid.”

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Reuben Moss' Property is Theft! & Kaitani at The Physics Room

Property is Theft! continues Moss’ interest in the contemporary urban environment as a space controlled by pulsing and unequal flows of capital and labour. Kaitani features work by the University of Canterbury Fijian Students Association and Kulimoe’anga Stone Maka. More>>

Handcrafted Form: Rare Treasures From Japan

This unique exhibition at Expressions Whirinaki represents 90 everyday objects made by contemporary Japanese artisans who employ various traditional craft techniques made in regional workshops. The works used in daily life are crafted from raw materials with techniques appropriate to bringing out the best of its medium, balancing ease of use with aesthetic appeal. More>>

Howard Davis Article: A Musical Axis - Brahms, Wagner, Sibelius

Brahms' warm and exquisitely subtle Symphony No. 3 in F major, Wagner's irrepressibly sentimental symphonic poem Siegfried Idyll, and Sibelius' chilling and immensely challenging Violin Concerto in D minor exemplify distinct stages of development in a tangled and convoluted series of skirmishes that came to define subsequent disputes about the nature of post-Romantic orchestral writing well into the following century. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: A Pale Ghost Writer

Reviewed by Ruth Brassington, Richard Flanagan's new novel is about a novelist hastily ghost-writing the biography of a crook about to go to trial. The reader is kept on a cliff-edge, as the narrator tries to get blood out of his stone man. More>>

New Zealand Wars Commemoration: Witi Ihimaera's Sleeps Standing Moetū

The second of several articles to mark Rā Maumahara, remembering the New Zealand Land Wars. The first was a Q&A with Vincent O’Malley, author of The Great War for New Zealand: Waikato 1800–2000. More>>




  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland