Signs and Symptoms of Myasthenia Gravis
The onset of myasthenia gravis (MG) may be sudden and oftentimes difficult to diagnose as the symptoms aren’t immediately recognized as myasthenia gravis.
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Myasthenia gravis may affect the voluntary muscles in our bodies. These muscles are responsible for controlling eye and eyelid movement, facial expression, and swallowing. In most cases, initial noticeable symptoms include weakness of the eye muscles, difficulty in swallowing, and slurred speech. However, the degree of muscle weakness involved in myasthenia gravis varies greatly among patients.
Depending on the type and severity, the symptoms may include a drooping of one or both eyelids (ptosis); blurred or double vision (diplopia) due to weakness of the muscles that control eye movements; unstable or waddling gait; weakness in arms, hands, fingers, legs, and neck; a change in facial expression; difficulty in swallowing and shortness of breath; and impaired speech (dysarthria).
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Complications of Myasthenia Gravis
Myasthenic crisis is a potentially life-threatening complication of MG. About one in five people with MG may develop myasthenic crisis at least once in their lifetime. It occurs when your respiratory muscles become too weak to support breathing. If left untreated, a myasthenic crisis can result in respiratory failure and death.
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Dr. Rachel Chang, PharmD was born and raised in Hawaii. She received her degree from Marshall B. Ketchum University in 2022, where she graduated with cum laude honors. The most rewarding part of her job is the connections she makes with each patient. She enjoys speaking with each patient and helping them achieve the best treatment possible. In her free time, she likes spending time with her family, traveling, fishing, and mountain biking.