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Review
Subcutaneous immunoglobulin therapy for inflammatory neuropathy: current evidence base and future prospects
  1. Yusuf A Rajabally
  1. Correspondence to Dr Yusuf A Rajabally, Regional Neuromuscular Clinic Queen Elizabeth Neuroscience Centre University Hospitals of Birmingham, Birmingham, UK B15 2TH; Yusuf.Rajabally{at}uhb.nhs.uk

Abstract

Intravenous immunoglobulin therapy is of proven effect in chronic inflammatory neuropathies, including chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) and multifocal motor neuropathy (MMN). In more recent years, there have been a number of anecdotal case reports and small series, followed by a few trials of variable design, of subcutaneous immunoglobulin therapy in these neuropathies. To date, limited evidence suggests that the subcutaneous route may be a more clinically effective, better-tolerated, at least cost-equivalent and a more patient-friendly option than the still more used intravenous alternative. Long-term efficacy is not as yet established in neuropathic indications by randomised controlled clinical trial evidence, and it is likely that the subcutaneous route may not be suitable in all cases with some hints to this effect appearing from the limited data available to date. Further studies are ongoing, including those of dose comparison, and more are likely to be planned in future. The literature on the use of subcutaneous immunoglobulin therapy in chronic inflammatory neuropathy is reviewed here. The current use in clinical practice, day-to-day benefits, including quality of life measures and health economics as published thus far, are evaluated. The limitations of this form of treatment in CIDP and MMN are also analysed in the light of current literature and taking into account the remaining unknowns. Future prospects and research with this mode of immunoglobulin therapy administration are discussed.

  • NEUROIMMUNOLOGY
  • NEUROPATHY
  • NEUROMUSCULAR
  • PHARMACOLOGY

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