Treatment of chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy
Current Opinion in Neurology , Volume 17 - Issue 5 p. 607- 613
Purpose of review: Chronic inflammatory demyelinating poly(radiculo) neuropathy (CIDP) is a treatable disorder. There are three proven effective treatments available. Randomized controlled trials have only focused on short-term effects, but most patients need long-term therapy. The most up-to-date treatment options are discussed. Attention is also paid to the use of appropriate assessment scales and treatment of residual findings. Recent findings: A Cochrane review is available indicating that intravenous immunoglobulin is an effective treatment. Equal efficacy of intravenous immunoglobulin and steroids was shown during a 6-week treatment period. New open studies indicated possible efficacy for mycophenolate, interferon-β and etanercept. Combinations of treatment are scarcely studied yet. Some CIDP patients may have a more acute onset of disease since maximum severity is reached within 4-8 weeks, resulting in confusion about the diagnosis. It was shown that severe fatigue can be a major complaint in CIDP patients; a training regimen might partially resolve these problems. Summary: CIDP is a treatable disorder, but most patients need long-term treatment. Intravenous immunoglobulin, steroids and plasma exchange are shown to be effective. It is suggested that other immunomodulatory agents can also be effective, but randomized trials are needed to confirm these benefits. General measures to rehabilitate patients and to manage symptoms like fatigue and other residual findings are important.