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Myasthenia Gravis




Hi, I am 29, female with spina bifida. about 13 years ago i became wheelchair bound, before that I had a normal life. I had shunt revisions, and back untheathering because it was thought that that was the problem. I did get back to walking for a month.

anyways, is it possible that i could have been misdiaigosed and really have MG. Last 5 years about, I have bad eye probs (dizzy, unfocused, burning), sore/horse throat, disabled legs, uncordinated arms/hands, tired head/neck, shortness of breath, etc.

i thought once I read with MG, if you put ice on your throat and have a hard time speaking with coldness, that it was a sign of MG?

Please help with any info. THANKS!


Myasthenia gravis is a disease of bad communication between the nerves and the muscle. It usually presents as fatiguing weakness of proximal muscles (shoulders, thighs, hips), diplopia (double vision), ptosis (droopy eyelids), and can even present with dysphagia (swallowing problems) and dyspnea (breathing weakness). Fatiguing weakness is a big issue, and key, especially with double vision (not blurry or burning).

As for the ice test, cold temperatures actually improve the function of the connection between nerve and muscle, improving strength. One of the tests that can be done for myasthenia is to watch for improvement of eyelid drooping when ice is put on the eyelid. I don't routinely do this, nor have I ever seen it done to the throat.

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Response by:

Robert W Neel, IV, MD Robert W Neel, IV, MD
Assistant Professor of Neurology
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati