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Myasthenia Gravis

Thymectomy

12/14/2009

Question:

I did thymectomy after I was diagnosed with MG by my doctor. Now I feel I have got total remission. Is it a guarantee that the disease will not recur later? Does it mean that I will never suffer from MG again in my life? One more question: Why don`t you recommend thymectomy to all those who suffer from MG, which is, in my opinion, the best cure for this disease, instead of life-time Mestinon intake which is not without serious side effects?

Answer:

I am happy to hear that you have been doing well after your thymectomy. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees that you will not have a relapse. While your experience with thymectomy has been very good, the "jury is still out" on whether it is an effective therapy or not. There is an on-going study of thymectomy in which patients with MG are randomly assigned to be treated with thymectomy or not. The design, I believe, has a three year follow up period -- and patients are still being enrolled. I am looking forward to seeing the results but they are probably several years away. Hope this answers your questions. Take care.

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Response by:

John G Quinlan, MD John G Quinlan, MD
Professor of Neurology
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati