PSYCHIATRIC, ADDITIVE OR ORGANIC: A CHALLENGE IN ADOLESCENCE
Introduction: The extension of paediatric age to the adolescents introduced new challenges in the paediatric health care. Acute behaviour disturbances are usually associated with drugs or alcohol abuse. Besides that, they can represent the onset of either psychiatric disorders or neurological diseases of both infectious or autoimmune origin.
Clinical case: A teenager presented with sudden progressive behavioural disturbances. The investigation performed allowed the diagnosis of Mycoplasma pneumoniae meningoencephalitis.
Discussion / Conclusion: This case report underlines the need of a multidisciplinary approach to the adolescent with behaviour disturbances. The suspicion of an organic disease must always be kept in mind, and laboratory and imaging studies conducted to the possibility of a inflammatory neurological disorder, both infectious or immune. Mycoplasma pneumoniae is mainly a cause of respiratory disease but has the potential of extra pulmonary complications, being the neurological the most frequent of these. We highlight the challenging of evaluating teenagers in acute paediatric units.
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