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Muscle Nerve. 2018 Jan 17. doi: 10.1002/mus.26070. [Epub ahead of print]

Neuromuscular complications of immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy.

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Department of Neurological Sciences, University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont, USA.
Department of Neuro-oncology, MD Anderson, Houston, Texas, USA.
Department of Medicine, University of Vermont Medical Center, 1 South Prospect Street, MS 405AR2, Burlington, Vermont, 05401, USA.


Immune checkpoint inhibitor (ICPI) therapy unleashes the body's natural immune system to fight cancer. ICPIs improve overall cancer survival, however, the unbridling of the immune system may induce a variety of immune-related adverse events. Neuromuscular immune complications are rare but they can be severe. Myasthenia gravis and inflammatory neuropathy are the most common neuromuscular adverse events but a variety of others including inflammatory myopathy are reported. The pathophysiologic mechanism of these autoimmune disorders may differ from that of non-ICPI-related immune diseases. Accordingly, while the optimal treatment for ICPI-related neuromuscular disorders generally follows a traditional paradigm, there are important novel considerations in selecting appropriate immunosuppressive therapy. This review presents 2 new cases, a summary of neuromuscular ICPI complications, and an approach to the diagnosis and treatment of these disorders. Muscle Nerve, 2018.


autoimmune drug reaction; cancer treatment; immune adverse events; immune checkpoint inhibitor; immunotherapy; neuromuscular


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