Table 1

Summary of preselected outcomes evaluated from data of prospective analyses of adequately treated Guillain–Barré syndrome (GBS) patients with plasma exchange (PE) or intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIg) and pooled results

StudyDesignOutcome 1 (ability to walk with aid at 4 weeks)Outcome 2 (ability to walk unaided at 4 weeks)Outcome 3 (need for ventilatory support at 4 weeks)Outcome 4 (ability to walk unaided at 6 months)Outcome 5 (relapse at 1 year)Outcome 6 (recovery of full motor strength at 1 year)Outcome 7 (ability to walk unaided at 1 year or later)Outcome 8 (persistence of severe motor sequelae at 1 year or later)Outcome 9 (need to change employment due to GBS)Outcome10 (death within 1 year of diagnosis)
Greenwood et al, 198411Therapeutic (PE), controlledNANA2/14NA1/144/14NA1/14NA2/14
Osterman et al, 198412Therapeutic (PE), controlled12/187/184/18NA1/1816/18NA1/18NA1/18
The GBS Study Group, 198514Therapeutic (PE), controlledNANA26/122100/1222/122NANA22/122NA3/122
French Cooperative Group, 198715Therapeutic (PE), controlled13/10915/10912/109NA6/10970/109NA11/109NA7/109
Färkkilä et al, 198717Therapeutic (PE), controlledNANANANANA12/13NA0/13NA2/13
Van der Meché Schmitz, 199218Therapeutic (PE vs IVIg), controlledNANANANANANANANANA3/150
French Cooperative Group, 199719Therapeutic (PE), controlled and ‘dose-ranging’6/4513/450/45**NA14/361210/361NA41/361NA14/361
PE/Sandoglobulin Trial, 199720Therapeutic PE versus IVIg versus PE+IVIgNANANANANANANA57/365* NA19/379
van Koningsveld et al, 200421Therapeutic IVIg+PE versus IVIg+placeboNANANANANANA184/225§41/225††NA10/225§
Bernsen et al, 200224Therapeutic (PE vs IVIg), controlledNANANANANANA108/12214/12231/82NA
Total31/172 (18%)35/172 (20.3%)44/308 (14.3%)100/122 (82%)24/624 (3.8%)312/515 (60.6%)292/347 (84.1%)188/1349 (13.9%)31/82 (37.8%)61/1391 (4.4%)
  • The values in bold correspond to the percentages for each outcome.

  • * Excluding missing data in each treated group.

  • Considering 48-week instead of 52-week follow-up data.

  • Only data for these outcomes were available for patients in the ‘mild’ group (obtained from the Cochrane review).

  • § Including both treated groups which were equivalent and averaging.

  • Including all patients in the effectively treated groups (ie, 46 in the two PE in the group for mild disease; the 155 treated by four PE in the moderate disease group; all 161 treated patients by four or six PE in the severe disease group).

  • ** Included mild group.

  • †† Only including those unable to walk independently at 1 year.

  • NA, not applicable.