Multifocal motor neuropathy treatment

Written by dana severson
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Multifocal motor neuropathy (MMN) is considered a progressive muscle disorder, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders, that causes the muscles of the body, specifically the hands, to weaken and atrophy due to a deficiency in the immune system. Usually, this condition will target one hand, not both, so this weakness will generally become pronounced, especially when comparing one hand to the other. When someone is suffering from multifocal motor neuropathy, there are a few forms of treatment that can help with this condition.

Intravenous Immunoglobulin

One form of treatment for multifocal motor neuropathy involves intravenous administration of immunoglobulin, which are antibodies in the blood. Since multifocal motor neuropathy is characterised as an "immune-mediated disorder," according to John Hopkins, boosting a person's immune system through the use of immunoglobulin can treat the condition and return the majority of strength to the affected hand. This form of treatment entails systematic injections of immunoglobulin over a period of time that would be followed by a series of maintenance doses.


While the most common treatment for multifocal motor neuropathy will usually entail intravenous immunoglobulin, a number of people have seen positive results from the use of cyclophosphamide, an immunosuppressive used for many autoimmune disorders. This medication alters the way in which your immune system reacts to this particular condition, combating the weakness and potential atrophy that often comes with multifocal motor neuropathy.


Some people might find an improvement in muscle strength and movement through the use of azathioprine, another immunosuppressive used for many autoimmune disorders. Much like cyclophosphamide, azathioprine alters the way in which your immune system will react to multifocal motor neuropathy. With this alteration, you may see an improvement in both strength and motility of the hand.


If you don't see positive results from either intravenous immunoglobulin or immunosuppressive therapy (with cyclophosphamide or azathioprine), your doctor may try the use of steroids, more specifically corticosteroids, to treat multifocal motor neuropathy. This form of treatment effectually treats the inflammation that may accompany the condition; however, this form of treatment isn't as effective as intravenous immunoglobulin or cyclophosphamide and is rarely used on its own. Sometimes, people have also experienced a decrease in strength to the affected hand from the administration of steroids.

No Treatment

Another form of treatment that may be sought when suffering with multifocal motor neuropathy is no treatment at all. Sometimes, this particular condition is so mild that the weakness isn't an issue, and no treatment is necessary, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders. Your doctor will take a look at your symptoms to gage whether or not treatment is necessary. From there, you'll continue to receive checkups to watch the condition. When symptoms worsen, your doctor may then decide to recommend one of the forms of treatment already mentioned. That being said, not all people with multifocal motor neuropathy will worsen in condition.

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