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Akinetic mutism following bilateral parasagittal meningioma occupied supplementary motor area removal and the spontaneous recovery of symptoms.

BACKGROUND: Resection of bilateral parasagittal meningiomas of the dominant cortex is challenging. Some postoperative consequences are difficult to predict due to their low incidence. However, it is essential to recognize reversible symptoms. Akinetic mutism is a devastating but reversible symptom that occurs after supplementary motor area (SMA) injury. This report aims to provide more information to support the clinical progression of this syndrome.

CASE DESCRIPTION: A 47-year-old woman presented with psychomotor retardation and subtle weakness, particularly on the left side. A palpable mass was identified at the head vertex. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed bilateral parasagittal meningiomas with bone and sinus invasion of the SMA. A craniotomy was performed to remove the intracapsular tumor. Two days after the operation, the patient developed gradual deterioration in her motor function until it became a lock-in-like syndrome. Then, 1.5 months after treatment in the hospital and rehabilitation unit, she gradually improved her motor, cognitive, and psychomotor skills. Total recovery was achieved after 1 year.

CONCLUSION: Surgery for lesions involving bilateral SMA can cause akinetic mutism. The typical manifestation of this syndrome may be devastating. However, it is reversible, and patients can regain full motor and cognitive functions over time without specific treatments. It is crucial to persevere and continue to provide the best care to the patient until recovery.

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