What is it?

Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disease, in which the body attacks itself by mistake. MG results from antibodies that block or destroy receptors at the junction between the nerve and muscle. This prevents nerve impulses from triggering muscle contractions, And therefore leads to varying degrees of muscle weakness.
The most commonly affected muscles are those of the eyes, face, and swallowing, but other muscles may be involved too.
Those affected with MG often have a large thymus or develop a thymoma.

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Signs & symptoms

Myasthenia gravis symptoms may include droopy eyelids, double vision, difficulty making expressions, problems chewing, difficulty swallowing, slurred speech, weak arms, legs or neck, and shortness of breath.

Diagnosis

your doctor will take a detailed history of your symptoms and medical background. They'll also perform a full physical exam including a neurological exam that consists of checking your reflexes, muscle tone, eye movements, sensation testing, motor function and more.
Other tests that can help your doctor diagnose the condition include:
* blood testing for antibodies associated with MG
* Ice test - Applying ice for 2–5 minutes to the muscles improves muscle strength in MG patients
* electrophysiologic studies - conducted by placing an electrode over a muscle and stimulating the motor nerve to that muscle.
* imaging of the chest using X-ray, CT or MRI to visualize the thymus gland

Treatment

treatment may include:
* medications that increase communication between nerves and muscles, such as pyridostigmine (Mestinon)
Corticosteroids and immunosuppressants to suppress the immune system
* Rapid and short-acting treatments that modulate the immune system: plasma exchange (removes harmful antibodies from the blood) and intravenous immune globulin (IVIG).
* Surgical removal of the thymus gland
* lifestyle changes – rest, avoid stress and heat, avoid certain medications

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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