Seven consecutive patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) were treated with intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIg; 0.4 g/kg per day for 5 consecutive days followed by monthly 2-day infusions at the same daily dosage) continued with oral cyclophosphamide (1-2 mg/kg per day), for 4-13 months (mean 8.1). Response to treatment was assessed by means of the Medical Research Council (MRC) rating scale for muscle strength on 40 muscles (10 per limb), a clinical scale for bulbar function and a modified Rankin disability scale. All patients continued to deteriorate during treatment on as regards both their MRC score and either their bulbar or Rankin score or both. The progression of the disease during treatment, expressed as the monthly variation in MRC score (mean = - 2.71; SD = 1.36), was no slower than that estimated before therapy (mean = 1.81; SD = 0.93). Even if the results of this small, uncontrolled study do not permit the exclusion of an effect of IVIg on the progression of ALS, they also do not provide any evidence that this expensive form of therapy consistently slows the course of the disease.
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Intravenous immunoglobulins
- Motor neuron disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology