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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Guillain-Barre syndrome


Other Names for this Disease
  • Acute autoimmune peripheral neuropathy
  • Acute idiopathic demyelinating polyneuropathy
  • Acute immune-mediated polyneuropathy
  • Acute inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy
  • Acute inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy
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Overview

Guillain-Barre syndrome is a rare disorder in which the body's immune system attacks part of the peripheral nervous system. Symptoms of this disorder include muscle weakness, numbness, and tingling sensations, which can increase in intensity until the muscles cannot be used at all. Usually Guillain-Barre syndrome occurs a few days or weeks after a person has had symptoms of a viral infection. Occasionally, surgery or vaccinations will trigger the syndrome. It remains unclear why only some people develop Guillain-Barre syndrome. There is no cure for Guillain-Barre syndrome, but treatments such as plasma exchange (plasmapheresis) and high dose immunoglobulins may reduce the severity and duration of symptoms. Recovery can take as little as a few days to as long as a few years. About 30% of those with Guillain-Barre syndrome have residual weakness. A small number may suffer a relapse many years after the initial attack.[1]
Last updated: 6/4/2015

References

  1. Guillain-Barré Syndrome Fact Sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Web site. April 29, 2015; http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/gbs/detail_gbs.htm. Accessed 6/4/2015.
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Basic Information

In Depth Information

  • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
  • Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.  Access to this database is free of charge.
    Orphanet
    Orphanet
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Guillain-Barre syndrome. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.
Other Names for this Disease
  • Acute autoimmune peripheral neuropathy
  • Acute idiopathic demyelinating polyneuropathy
  • Acute immune-mediated polyneuropathy
  • Acute inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy
  • Acute inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.