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We report the clinical and laboratory findings of six Canadian patients with progressive myelopathy associated with HTLV-1 infection. The diagnosis was suspected on clinical grounds and supported by serological studies and positive gene amplification. Only five had emigrated from an area endemic for HTLV-1 infection. Tropical spastic paraparesis should be considered in all patients with myelopathy, even those without standard serological markers of HTLV-1 infection. The pathogenesis of this condition and the serological and molecular biological means by which this diagnosis can be made are reviewed.


Journal article


Can j neurol sci

Publication Date





330 - 335


Adult, Canada, DNA, Viral, Female, HTLV-I Infections, Human T-lymphotropic virus 1, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Middle Aged, Paraparesis, Tropical Spastic