Pharmacological treatment other than corticosteroids, intravenous immunoglobulin and plasma exchange for Guillain-Barre syndrome
ABSTRACT Plasma exchange and intravenous immunoglobulin, but not corticosteroids, are beneficial in Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). The efficacy of other pharmacological agents is unknown. This review was first published in 2011 and this update in 2013.
To review systematically the evidence from randomised controlled trials (RCTs) for pharmacological agents other than plasma exchange, intravenous immunoglobulin and corticosteroids.
On 28 August 2012, we searched the Cochrane Neuromuscular Disease Group Specialized Register CENTRAL (2012, Issue 8 in The Cochrane Library), MEDLINE (January 1966 to August 2012) and EMBASE (January 1980 to August 2012) for treatments for GBS. We considered evidence from non-randomised studies in the Discussion.
We included all randomised or quasi-RCTs of acute (within four weeks from onset) GBS of all types, ages and degrees of severity. We discarded trials which only tested corticosteroids, intravenous immunoglobulin or plasma exchange. We included other pharmacological treatments or combinations of treatments compared with no treatment, placebo treatment or another treatment.
Change in disability after four weeks was the primary outcome. Two authors checked references and extracted data independently. One author entered and another checked data in Review Manager (RevMan). We assessed risk of bias according to the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. We calculated mean differences and risk ratios with their 95% confidence intervals. We assessed strength of evidence with GradePro software.
Only very low quality evidence was found for four different interventions. This update of the review found no new trials. One RCT with 13 participants showed no significant difference in any outcome between interferon beta-1a and placebo. Another with 10 participants showed no significant difference in any outcome between brain-derived neurotrophic factor and placebo. A third with 37 participants showed no significant difference in any outcome between cerebrospinal fluid filtration and plasma exchange. In a fourth with 20 participants, the risk ratio of improving by one or more disability grades after eight weeks was significantly greater with the Chinese herbal medicine tripterygium polyglycoside than with corticosteroids (risk ratio 1.47; 95% confidence interval 1.02 to 2.11). Serious adverse events were uncommon with each of these treatments and not significantly commoner in the treated than the control groups.
The quality of the evidence was very low. Three small RCTs, of interferon beta-1a, brain-derived neurotrophic factor and cerebrospinal fluid filtration, showed no significant benefit or harm. A fourth small trial showed that the Chinese herbal medicine tripterygium polyglycoside hastened recovery significantly more than corticosteroids but this result needs confirmation. It was not possible to draw useful conclusions from the few observational studies.
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ABSTRACT: Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is a potentially life-threatening postinfectious disease characterized by rapidly progressive, symmetrical weakness of the extremities. About 25% of patients develop respiratory insufficiency and many show signs of autonomic dysfunction. Diagnosis can usually be made on clinical grounds, but lumbar puncture and electrophysiological studies can help to substantiate the diagnosis and to differentiate demyelinating from axonal subtypes of GBS. Molecular mimicry of pathogen-borne antigens, leading to generation of crossreactive antibodies that also target gangliosides, is part of the pathogenesis of GBS; the subtype and severity of the syndrome are partly determined by the nature of the antecedent infection and specificity of such antibodies. Intravenous immunoglobulin and plasma exchange are proven effective treatments but many patients have considerable residual deficits. Discrimination of patients with treatment-related fluctuations from those with acute-onset chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy is important, as these conditions may require different treatments. Novel prognostic models can accurately predict outcome and the need for artificial ventilation, which could aid the selection of patients with a poor prognosis for more-individualized care. This Review summarizes the clinical features of and diagnostic criteria for GBS, and discusses its pathogenesis, treatment and prognosis.Nature Reviews Neurology 07/2014; 10(8). DOI:10.1038/nrneurol.2014.121 · 14.10 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Laquinimod is an immunomodulatory drug with neuroprotective potential. We used the animal model of experimental autoimmune neuritis (EAN) in the Lewis rat to study the effects of laquinimod treatment. After immunization with the neuritogenic peptide aa 53-78 of P2 myelin protein, preventive therapy with 12.5mg/kg laquinimod once daily inhibited neuritis in clinical and electrophysiological terms. Histology corroborated a lower degree of inflammatory lesions and demyelination in the sciatic nerve. The proportion of FoxP3-positive regulatory T cells in the peripheral lymph nodes of treated rats remained unchanged. We conclude that laquinimod may represent a therapeutic option in human autoimmune neuropathies.Journal of Neuroimmunology 06/2014; 274(1-2). DOI:10.1016/j.jneuroim.2014.06.012 · 2.79 Impact Factor
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