The process of treatments…
[QUOTE]I had immediate treatment of IVIG, followed by Plasmapheresis and it did not matter. The attack went right over both treatments like a steamroller. But that is the treatment available right now. Maybe it helps, but it is NOT apparent at the time….If you are lucky, you will get out of this sooner than later.[/QUOTE] If a patient gets both treatments of IVIG and plasmapheresis, the plasmapheresis treatment should be first because it cleanses the blood by removing the plasma – where all the bad antibodies are located, and would also remove the good antibodies received from any IVIG treatments prior to plasmapheresis; thus limiting the benefits of IVIG. However, this choice is made by the neurologist, but I sometimes wonder if they really understand this. AND, as you stated, you’ve got to give IVIG a chance to work…and the IVIG must be admistered properly in order to work properly.
Since there is not a cure for CIDP, only treatments, you are right: If you are LUCKY, you will get out of this – BUT NOT sooner than later. It mostly depends on what type of CIDP we have. The most common form of the disease is the chronic relapsing form largely due to the beneficial effects of treatment. About 80% of patients have this form of the disease. With the ‘chronic relapsing’ there is more than one episode in which symptoms progress and worsen for a period greater than four weeks. This is the type CIDP I have.
About 10% of patients have the subacute type CIDP which plateaus and then disappears spontaneously. The ‘subacute’ is where symptoms continue to progress and worsen for at least four weeks, but not more than eight weeks before levelling off or improving.
Then some patients only have a single ’bout’ of CIDP lasting for several months or years, after which a spontaneous recovery MAY be made. Others have many bouts in between which spontaneous remission and recovery occurs. After each bout patients may be left with some residual numbness and weakness and sometimes discomfort. For many this will not seriously interfere with their lives, and they are able to continue with or resume their normal occupation. However a small number are left severely disabled and may be dependent on a wheelchair or even bed bound. There are an unfortunate few for whom the disease continues to progress without remission. The majority of these would be ‘chronic progressive’ type, where symptoms continue to progress and worsen for a period exceeding eight weeks.