WHAT IS MYASTHENIA GRAVIS?

I know a woman who was recently diagnosed with this autoimmune disorder. I had not heard of this until I spoke with her, so I decided to learn more about it and share this with you.

MYASTHENIA GRAVIS

Myasthenia gravis an autoimmune disease that causes weakness in the muscles under your control. It happens because of a problem in communication between the nerves and muscles. The body’s own immune system makes antibodies that block or change some of the nerve signals to your muscles. This makes the muscles weaker.

Next Page

6 Diet Tips for Myasthenia Gravis Patients

For people with myasthenia gravis, muscle weakness (especially in the face) is a part of everyday life. This muscle weakness can also make it tough to swallow, so eating certain foods can be a challenge.

Aside from that consideration, some eating habits may aid in combating the fatigue symptoms associated with the autoimmune disease – rest is also highly recommended to deal with the related fatigue. While there’s no cure yet for this disease, here are six eating tips for those with myasthenia gravis to improve quality of life…

Next Page

Myasthenia Gravis (Ocular) — What You Should Know

Myasthenia gravis is a neurological disorder that often affects the eyes. Eye conditions associated with ocular myasthenia gravis include diplopia (double vision) and ptosis (eyelid droop).

While medical therapy is often used to treat generalized myasthenia gravis, it is not clear whether medications are effective in treating ocular symptoms.

Other measures, such as eyeglasses with prisms, are frequently used. Surgery may be considered for those with severe symptoms that affect vision or are cosmetically undesirable.

Next Page

It’s OK to Grieve What Myasthenia Gravis Has Stolen

Once upon a time, I was healthy and vibrant, reveling in the promises of the future. There is something so delightful about the naivety of youth. It is unspoiled and untainted by the stains of this world. It thrives in the dreams of tomorrow and the wondrous audacity that nothing will stop you as you reach for your dreams — the bigger, the better.

The period I last felt carefree and enjoyed being young and silly feels like a different lifetime.

The memories call to me and lap at my consciousness, but I rarely acknowledge their presence anymore. Sometimes, they bring a big smile, but they also conjure up the ghosts of another time; they usher in that inevitable longing for a life that is no longer my own.

Life is full of changes and unexpected detours, but precious few are quite so devastating as the loss of your health and identity. No one really talks about that when you get diagnosed with a rare disease.

Next Page

Treatment for LEMS Can Benefit Myasthenia Gravis Patients, Study Reports

A therapy that European regulators approved for treating Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome (LEMS) can help manage myasthenia gravis symptoms, a study reports.

The findings on Firdapse appeared in the Journal of Clinical Neuroscience. The title of the article is “3,4-Diaminopyridine for the treatment of myasthenia gravis with electrophysiological patterns of Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome.”

Myasthenia gravis and LEMS are autoimmune disorders that share a common cause —  abnormal interaction between nerve cells and muscles. This is due to overproduction and accumulation of antibodies that block communication signals.

Doctors can often distinguish between the two disorders. One reason is that in many cases, they have different manifestations. They also respond differently to stimulation and to cholinesterase inhibitors — a standard treatment for muscle disorders.

But some patients have characteristics of both diseases, posing a diagnostic and treatment challenge.

Next Page

7 Small Changes That Can Improve Life With Myasthenia Gravis

We are the “privileged” few. The chosen ones.

You know, the ones diagnosed and living with myasthenia gravis.

Myasthenia gravis affects 20 out of 100,000 people in the United States.

Aaah, now that we have the official stats in place, let us get on with the art of living a fruitful life with myasthenia gravis.

I believe acceptance is the first step towards managing neuromuscular disorders in general –myasthenia gravis in particular.

So easy to write. So difficult to imbibe and implement. No wonder I decided to write and speak about it only when I completely accepted that MG is a reality of my life.

I learned and accepted that it is OK to change my life and day-to-day living as per my health condition and muscle strength to make it easier for myself and indirectly easier for my family.

Next Page

Myasthenia Gravis & Symptom Management

Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disorder. It causes severe muscle weakness. Usually, the weakness occurs in the eyes and face, but it can happen in the neck, fingers, arms, legs, chest and elsewhere. The weakness gets worse after activity and better after rest. Although it can be serious, most people with myasthenia gravis have a good quality of life, respond well to treatments and have a normal life expectancy. (1)

What Is Myasthenia Gravis?

Myasthenia gravis, sometimes just referred to as MG, is an autoimmune neuromuscular disorder. The body’s immune system blocks the signals sent from the brain to the muscles, and then the muscles can’t respond correctly. (1) It is a rare, long-term (chronic) condition that affects at least 20 in every 100,000 people worldwide. (2) It peaks in women in their 20s and 30s and in men when they reach their 50s and 60s, and women are more likely to be diagnosed than men. (3)

Myasthenia gravis results in weakness of skeletal muscles — the muscles the body uses to move. It typically gets better after rest and worse after activity. Although it most often affects the eyes (called ocular myasthenia when it doesn’t affect other muscles as well), it can affect the face, neck, speech, throat, arms and legs. In about 10 percent of people with myasthenia gravis, the condition affects the muscles that help them breathe, forcing them to use a ventilator for help breathing. (2) When this happens, it is called a myasthenic crisis.

Next Page

Introduction to Myasthenia Gravis: A Rare, Neurological Autoimmune Disease

The immune system plays an important role in keeping your body healthy. It helps protect your organs and tissues from disease-causing foreign bodies, such as bacteria and viruses. To do this, your immune system releases specific antibodies that work to prevent infections.1

In certain situations, however, your immune system turns against your own body, causing autoimmune diseases to develop. Examples of autoimmune diseases include rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and psoriasis. There is no known cure for autoimmune diseases. Instead, treatment focuses on relieving the symptoms.2

One autoimmune disease you should pay attention to is myasthenia gravis, which causes weakness in your voluntary muscles throughout your body. It’s estimated that 14 to 20 per 100,000 people, or a total of 36,000 to 60,000 people, currently have it. Elderly men and middle-aged women are the groups commonly associated with the disease.3

Next Page

15 Things Not to Say to Someone With Myasthenia Gravis

I have been wanting to write this for a while, to get it off my chest…  I have heard all of these at least once and they have really stung. Some of them I am learning to brush off, but some still make my blood boil. So this is my vent. It is often my responses I wish I had the guts to say to those who have said it to me.

You may think you are being kind or supportive, but know that more often than not we are sensitive and embarrassed by our myasthenia gravis. Words can be very hurtful, and stay within someone’s heart for a lot longer than you may realize.

We are all beautiful individuals — some of us are just more “special” than others!

So here it goes…

Next Page