Steroids and Weight; IVIg; Symptoms

August 13, 2010 at 12:45 am

[COLOR=black]Corticosteroids do have nasty side effects in the short-term, such as irritability and weight gain. However, if you know about the side effects, you can take steps to limit them. For example, the main reason most people gain weight from steroids, at least in the short-term, is that you just feel hungry. Knowing that, you can move to a diet higher in fiber and water, to help feel fuller. Your husband may not like such a diet, but he could probably stand it for a couple of weeks.[/COLOR]

[COLOR=black]Even with the side effects, it is worthwhile to try steroids for a brief period. If they work, then you can develop a plan on how to use them and limit the side effects. All this is to say that the neurologist should not have dismissed steroids out of hand just because your husband is heavy. Your neurologist should be more aggressive in treating this syndrome. First, it is immaterial how many patients are on ventilators. Second, it is unusual for CIDP patients to be on a ventilator. I consider it a red flag that your neurologist has two at the same time.[/COLOR]

[COLOR=black]You have gotten good advice on how to limit the side effects of IVIg. If I had fatigue so bad that I could barely concentrate, which is probably what is going on with his memory lapses, I would keep trying until I had exhausted all of the techniques to limit side effects. It is not fun and can be quite time-consuming. But it will be worthwhile in the long run.[/COLOR]

[COLOR=black]One member, Julie, suffered from severe IVIg side effects. However, it was effective enough that she continued regardless. However, she recently switched to receiving Ig via injection (it’s not quite that simple, but I’ll spare the details), with very good results. If IVIg does finally work for your husband, this SCIg might be another possibility.[/COLOR]

[COLOR=black]As to your original question, your neurologist gave you the same information my (very good) neurologist gave me. However, if he becomes very weak, such that he can barely walk or feed himself, rapidly, taking him to the ER would be warranted.[/COLOR]

[FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]Godspeed in finding your husband an effective treatment.[/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri][SIZE=3]Mark Ens[/SIZE][/FONT]