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Anaesthesist. 2002 Nov;51(11):904-13.

[Current aspects of the diagnosis of malignant hyperthermia].

[Article in German]

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  • 1Klinik für Anästhesiologie und Intensivtherapie, Universitätsklinikum Leipzig AöR, Germany.



The aim of this work was to give a survey of experiences and results obtained over a period of 15 years of diagnosis of malignant hyperthermia in the MH centre in Leipzig. The new branch of MH diagnosis, the molecular genetics and its general diagnostic potential will be presented in more detail.


The in vitro contracture test (IVCT), which has been used in our department since 1986, represents the standard method for determining disposition to MH and in addition, suspected MH events were analysed by the clinical grading scale (CGS). In 1999, the diagnosis of MH in our centre was supplemented by molecular genetic examination of the skeletal ryanodine receptor gene (RYR1).


A total of 1,456 muscle tests (IVCT) in patients with a potential MH disposition, provided 376 MH susceptible (MHS), 121 MH equivocal (MHE) and 921 MH negative (MHN) results. Out of these 309 persons had a previous clinical MH event, but for the majority of these persons a real MH disposition could be excluded by the IVCT (197 MHN). In 99 independent MH families, the RYR1 was genetically screened identifying a mutation in 46, whereby 18 different RYR1 point mutations were found of which 4 (Arg401Cys, Ile2182Phe, Gly2375Ala, Ile2453Thr) have not yet been published.


The disposition to MH may be assessed by the IVCT, DNA analysis and with limitations by the clinical phenotype. The IVCT represents a highly specific method, the DNA analysis appears to be very specific. Under defined conditions an alternative use of the methods is possible. However, these methods should not be regarded as in competition but rather their potential should be complementary or used in specific situations in order to avoid non-detection of MH events in affected families.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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