Sometimes a type of encephalitis is named after the area of brain affected, such as brain-stem encephalitis or limbic encephalitis.  The cause of encephalitis in these areas can be infectious or autoimmune.


Some types of encephalitis are named after the person who discovered them, examples are Rasmussen’s encephalitis and Hashimoto’s encephalitis.  The actual cause of these two types of encephalitis is not fully understood.

This information is taken from the Book “Understanding Encephalitis” by Elaine Dowell.  The book is available from Amazon Understanding Encephalitis.



Links are to a pdf if the article is free and to the Pubmed page is the article is not free

Diagnostic and therapeutic aspects of Hashimoto’s encephalopathy.  HE is a rare disorder characterized by encephalopathy and central nervous system (CNS) dysfunction, elevated antithyroid antibodies, the absence of infection or structural abnormalities in the CNS, and a response to treatment with steroids. The relationship between thyroid antibodies and encephalopathy has remained unresolved. We present a cohort of patients in whom CNS dysfunction was associated with elevated antithyroid antibodies and reversal of disease followed immunomodulatory therapies.

Rasmussen’s encephalitis: A case report. Abstract – Rasmussen’s encephalitis (RE) is a rare neurological disorder of inflammatory aetiology characterised by encephalitis, intractable seizures, hemiparesis, variable motor deficits, and dementia. It is not commonly considered in the clinical differential diagnosis of a patient with a past history of a stroke-like episode presenting with status epilepticus. It is suspected mainly in children in whom the disease is more common. Here we report a case of an adult man presenting with a common symptom of seizure caused by Rasmussen’s encephalitis. Rasmussens encephalitis a case report

Bickerstaff’s encephalitis. Abstract – Bickerstaff’s brainstem encephalitis is a rare syndrome defined by the triad of ophthalmoplegia, ataxia and decreased consciousness. It is considered to be a variant of Miller Fisher syndrome and Guillain-Barré syndrome but is differentiated from the two by the presence of central nervous system involvement, commonly in the form of impaired consciousness. We present an unusual case of Bickerstaff’s encephalitis, where the patient presented with pseudobulbar affect.