Myasthenia gravis crisis

Eric M. Bershad, Eliahu S. Feen, Jose I. Suarez

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disorder resulting from the production of antibodies against acetylcholine receptors leading to the destruction of the postsynaptic membrane at the neuromuscular junction. In the US there are about 18,000 people with MG. Myasthenia gravis crisis (MGC) is defined as any MG exacerbation necessitating mechanical ventilation. Most patients presenting with MGC have an identifiable risk factor. The diagnosis of MGC should be suspected in all patients with respiratory failure, particularly those with unclear etiology. Acute management of MGC requires supportive general and ventilatory therapy and institution of measures to improve the neuromuscular blockade. The latter includes plasma exchange or IV immunoglobulin, and removal of the offending trigger. The outcome of patients with MGC has improved significantly and the current mortality rate is about 4 to 8%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)63-69
Number of pages7
JournalSouthern medical journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Mechanical ventilation
  • Myasthenia gravis
  • Myasthenia gravis crisis
  • Respiratory failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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