Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

AIM: To assess the treatment effects of rituximab in a population of patients with myasthenia gravis and Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome. METHODS: Data on all treated patients in the UK were collected from referring physicians, with full case ascertainment and follow-up. RESULTS: Since 2004, 10 patients with generalised myasthenia gravis (three of whom were positive for muscle-specific tyrosine kinase (MuSK) antibodies) and two patients with Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome (LEMS) were treated with rituximab. Using the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation America postintervention status, three patients (25%) achieved remission, and a further five (42%) improved clinically over an 18-month period. Only one patient developed worsening symptoms. The probability of achieving remission was unrelated to the duration of neurological symptoms prior to treatment. All LEMS and MuSK antibody patients improved following rituximab treatment. CONCLUSION: In a relatively large, unselected group of patients with myasthenia gravis and LEMS, rituximab treatment resulted in a significant clinical improvement in two-thirds of cases. As a selective, B cell targeted therapy, rituximab should be considered as a treatment option for patients with either myasthenia gravis or LEMS for whom standard immunosuppressive treatments have been unsuccessful.

Original publication

DOI

10.1136/jnnp.2009.197632

Type

Journal article

Journal

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry

Publication Date

06/2011

Volume

82

Pages

671 - 673

Keywords

Adolescent, Adult, Antibodies, Monoclonal, Murine-Derived, Child, Child, Preschool, Female, Humans, Immunologic Factors, Lambert-Eaton Myasthenic Syndrome, Male, Middle Aged, Myasthenia Gravis, Protein-Tyrosine Kinases, Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases, Receptors, Cholinergic, Retrospective Studies, Rituximab