Diagnosis and treatment of chronic acquired demyelinating polyneuropathies.
Nat Rev Neurol. 2014 Aug;10(8):435-46
Authors: Latov N
Chronic neuropathies are operationally classified as primarily demyelinating or axonal, on the basis of electrodiagnostic or pathological criteria. Demyelinating neuropathies are further classified as hereditary or acquired-this distinction is important, because the acquired neuropathies are immune-mediated and, thus, amenable to treatment. The acquired chronic demyelinating neuropathies include chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP), neuropathy associated with monoclonal IgM antibodies to myelin-associated glycoprotein (MAG; anti-MAG neuropathy), multifocal motor neuropathy (MMN), and POEMS syndrome. They have characteristic--though overlapping--clinical presentations, are mediated by distinct immune mechanisms, and respond to different therapies. CIDP is the default diagnosis if the neuropathy is demyelinating and no other cause is found. Anti-MAG neuropathy is diagnosed on the basis of the presence of anti-MAG antibodies, MMN is characterized by multifocal weakness and motor conduction blocks, and POEMS syndrome is associated with IgG or IgA λ-type monoclonal gammopathy and osteosclerotic myeloma. The correct diagnosis, however, can be difficult to make in patients with atypical or overlapping presentations, or nondefinitive laboratory studies. First-line treatments include intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg), corticosteroids or plasmapheresis for CIDP; IVIg for MMN; rituximab for anti-MAG neuropathy; and irradiation or chemotherapy for POEMS syndrome. A correct diagnosis is required for choosing the appropriate treatment, with the aim of preventing progressive neuropathy.
PMID: 24980070 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]