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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.



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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