Last revised by Oakley Dew on 08 Feb 2020

Demyelination is incorrectly often equated to multiple sclerosis, whereas in reality it is a generic pathological term simply describing, as the word suggests, the loss of normal myelin around axons in the central nervous system. This should be distinguished from dysmyelination where the formation of normal myelin is absent.

Primary demyelinating disorders include:

In most cases, toxic and metabolic disease which affect the white matter are considered separately but for the sake of completeness, they are listed below. 

Although not referred to as demyelination many processes which cause ischemia lead to demyelination:

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: Gd-enhanced MR of active demyelination
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  • Case 2: extensive demyelination cervical cord
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  • Case 3: solitary splenium lesion
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