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Why do Patients Recover Differently from Attacks?

Published on April 2, 2010

Brian Weinshenker:

Why do some patients recover well and others not recover from attacks? Bottom line is that we don’t know. Ultimately when nerves are killed, that leads to permanent damage. And we think that a key factor in your myelitis optica is an inflammatory protein cascade called compliment. And if it’s activated sufficiently, it results in death of nerve cells. And we’re optimistic that in the near future we’ll be able to measure the level of antibodies and perhaps, the specific antibodies that activate that compliment cascade. And we’ll be able to know if our treatments are working and if that level of antibody is too high, we might say we have to switch treatment just based on the antibody test without waiting for an attack. But that’s for the future.


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