Intractable Rare Dis Res. 2017;6(1):55-57. (DOI: 10.5582/irdr.2016.01073)

Tuberculosis and Guillain-Barre syndrome: A chance association?

Mohta S, Soneja M, Vyas S, Khot W


An 18-year-old boy presented with acute-onset quadriparesis that had developed 4 weeks prior. He had an intermittent fever and significant weight loss during this period. After extensive investigations, the patient was diagnosed with an acute motor and sensory axonal neuropathy (AMSAN) variant of Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) and disseminated tuberculosis with mediastinal lymphadenopathy, pericarditis, and pleural effusion. Plasmapheresis was performed and first-line anti-tubercular therapy was administered. At the follow-up at 6 months, the patient was asymptomatic, he had no residual weakness and could walk without support, and tuberculosis had completely resolved on X-rays. Many infectious agents have been known to trigger GBS, but only a few cases of GBS and tuberculosis have been reported. This association needs to be evaluated further.

KEYWORDS: Acute motor and sensory axonal neuropathy (AMSAN), disseminated tuberculosis, plasmapheresis

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