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Clin Neurophysiol. 2013 Jul;124(7):1456-9. doi: 10.1016/j.clinph.2012.12.047. Epub 2013 Feb 8.

Two sets of nerve conduction studies may suffice in reaching a reliable electrodiagnosis in Guillain-Barré syndrome.

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  • 1Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. nortina@um.edu.my



Recent studies have advocated the use of serial nerve conduction studies (NCS) in the electrodiagnosis of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). The current study aims to elucidate when and how frequent NCS can be performed to reflect the disease pathophysiology.


A prospective study of GBS patients documenting the initial and final electrodiagnoses following serial NCS performed at three time intervals: 1-2 weeks, 3-8 weeks and 8-12 weeks.


Twenty-one patients were recruited over a period of 2 years. Electrodiagnosis within 2 weeks revealed 17 acute inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy; two acute motor axonal neuropathy and two unclassified. After 12 weeks the final diagnoses were: 12 acute inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy; seven acute motor axonal neuropathy and two unclassified. NCS performed within the 3-8 week period reflected the true electrodiagnosis. Patients with acute inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy had persistent demyelination features at the 8-12 week NCS.


Two sets of NCS performed within the first 2 weeks and between 3-8 weeks of disease onset is likely to suffice in elucidating the true electrodiagnosis of GBS.


These findings can be incorporated into a much-needed revision of the existing GBS electrodiagnostic criteria.

Copyright © 2013 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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