Miller-Fisher Syndrome: symptoms, treatment, life expectancy
One of the varieties of the rare Guillain-Barre syndrome, which is a branch from a clear picture of the processes occurring in the body of a person that has fallen ill, is Miller-Fisher syndrome. It is characterized by a triad of signs, which are the same in all patients.
Guillain-Barre syndrome is a rare occurrence. In medical practice, its indicators are 1-2 people per one hundred thousand people. It is more common in men and has two peaks of its activity:
- young age - 20-24 years;
- elderly - 70-74 years.
It is well known to neurologists and has a number of characteristics that are confirmed by the delivery of spinal fluid analyzes. In addition to the classic course of this disease, Fischer Miller syndrome, described by this American neurologist as early as 1956, is found.
The disease is extremely rare and relates to acute inflammatory autoimmune diseases, in which the myelinated nerve membranes are affected. In the beginning and with further development, the Miller-Fisher syndrome always manifests itself identically and consists of the following series of characteristic symptoms:
- areflexia - a sharp extinction is observed, and in the future, complete absence of limb reflexes;
- ataxia - cerebellar disorder;
- ophthalmoplegia - paralysis of the muscles of the eye, often external, and in complex cases and internal;
- tarapez and paralysis of the respiratory muscles - develop in severe, neglected cases.
With the correct definition of symptoms and timely treatment, the disease is benign, does not cause complications and often ends in a spontaneous recovery.
If you consult a doctor in a few weeks or months, you can cure the Miller-Fisher syndrome. Up to how many live with a similar disease, it is not exactly clear how the causes of its appearance are not clear. But for most people with this diagnosis, experts promise the most favorable forecasts. Complete recovery of all functions in the body with proper and appropriate treatment, takes a maximum of ten weeks. And only a small number of patients with neglected cases require a number of additional medical measures.
A part of medical figures states that the usual cause of this pathology is the usual vaccination. In a number of cases, it was detected after severe viral diseases, sometimes the symptoms manifested after long-term treatment of a number of complex infections. Familiar and family cases of the development of the disease, suggesting a genetic predisposition of the organism to this pathology.
The leading complaints that a patient provides are primarily expressed in the following aspects:
- weakness, loss of strength, lack of energy, possible dizziness;
- difficulty with chewing, and a little later and with a speech;
- difficulty in walking and self-service;
- frequent numbness of the hands and feet, wavy pain in the limbs.
It is the descending paralysis - a violation in the movement of the eyes, and then of other limbs( the sensation of the presence of gloves on the hands) shows the syndrome of Miller-Fisher. Symptoms are very similar to Hein-Barre syndrome, but this type of pathology has a paralysis of an ascending nature - from the lower body to the upper one.
In addition to the weakness of the oculomotor muscles, impaired coordination and complete loss of reflexes, the patient may have a number of secondary symptoms that contribute to a more accurate diagnosis.
- The skin's temperature sensitivity is noticeably lower.
- The patient is practically not sensitive to pain. Swallowing of saliva becomes difficult.
- The speech is intermittent, words are hard to pronounce.
- There is no gag reflex.
- Complaints about bladder problems.
Part of the symptoms, such as muscle weakness and speech difficulties, can occur quite spontaneously. They clearly indicate a serious complication of the situation and require immediate consultation of a specialist.
To accurately identify the Miller-Fisher syndrome, a number of necessary studies are required.
- Mandatory approach to a neurologist who conducts an examination and identifies all possible neurological disorders.
- Spinal puncture is indicated. In most cases, it reveals the high protein values characteristic of this disease.
- PCR analysis - allows you to determine the possible pathogen. It can be the herpes virus, Epstein-Barra, cytomegalovirus and others.
- Often the specialist additionally appoints a computerized tomography to help identify possible neurological pathologies.
- An obligatory blood test is being performed, showing the presence of anti-ganglioside antibodies. This is an obvious indicator of the presence of the inflammatory process, a positive result of this analysis becomes an accurate confirmation of the diagnosis.
Miller-Fisher Syndrome requires complex and accurate diagnostics, electroneuromyrography, differential analysis, comparing the symptoms with a number of similar diseases.
Treatment of this disease includes a set of measures aimed at suppressing the immune response and purifying the blood from antibodies. Correct supportive and symptomatic therapy allows the complete elimination of Miller-Fisher syndrome in a short time. Treatment under the guidance of an experienced specialist leads to the most positive results and complete recovery. In extremely rare cases( only three percent of the total), relapses are possible, suggesting an additional course of complex therapy.
- An evaluation of the respiratory system is performed, in cases where it is difficult for the patient to move independently, a hospital with permanent medical supervision is appointed.
- During the first five days( no later than two weeks after the first detection of symptoms), plasmapheresis and immunoglobulin are prescribed.
- To prevent possible vein thrombosis, anticoagulants are used.
- Continuous monitoring of blood pressure is required, as its sharp changes can lead to serious complications.
- Additionally classes are held with a speech therapist.