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What is Guillian-Barre Syndrome?

What is Guillian-Barre Syndrome?

Guillian-Barre syndrome (GBS) is a temporary but can be life-threatening disease if untreated of the peripheral nerves which are nerves which connect the body to the spinal cord and brain. The exact cause of GBS is unknown, it is an autoimmune disease which means your body attacks the peripheral nerves because it thinks they are damaging the body, this can occur after trauma, a viral infection or surgery. The autoimmune disease attacks the proteins surrounding the peripheral nerves meaning the transmission of messages are disrupted. This can cause weakness of muscles as the messages to innervate a muscle not being sent due to the damage, causing weakness, paralysis, speech difficulties, poor sensation, swallowing problems, and pain. Patients are often admitted to intensive care unit as the muscles required for breathing also become weak.

In the UK GBS affects approximately 1500 people each year. It can affect anyone and is not hereditary or contagious. The exact cause of GBS is unknown but many patients suffer from trauma, illness or infection a couple of days before.

Eighty percent of patients make a full recovery. Patients can spend up to 3 months in hospital and then recover over the following 12 months. Approximately fifteen percent of patients do not recover completely and have weakness, poor sensation and pain.

To book an assessment or for more information please email call 0161 883 0066 .