Treatment of chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy with interferon-alpha 2a.

Neurology 1998 Jan;50(1):84-7

Gorson KC, Ropper AH, Clark BD, Dew RB 3rd, Simovic D, Allam G.

Division of Neurology, St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, Boston, MA 02135, USA.

We performed an open-label, prospective, pilot study of interferon (IFN)-alpha 2a treatment for 6 weeks in 16 patients with chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP). All patients had failed to improve or relapsed after treatment with at least one conventional therapy (steroids, IV gamma globulin, or plasma exchange). Assessment included MRC strength score, leg sensory score, grip dynanometry, Rankin disability score, electrodiagnostic studies, and serum concentration of tumor necrosis factor-alpha. Nine (56%) improved after IFN-alpha therapy. Mean MRC score increased by 4.2 points (p = 0.01), and mean sensory score improved by 2.3 points (p = 0.02). Five patients improved five or more points on the MRC score, nine had slight improvement or were unchanged, and two worsened. We conclude that IFN-alpha may be effective in some patients with CIDP who relapse or fail to respond to conventional immunomodulating therapy.Publication Types:

  • Clinical Trial

PMID: 9443462 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

Medical illustrations on this website are attributed to: and author Kjpargeter

Lateral Femoral Cutaneous Nerve


– Anatomy:    

– LFCN, as its name suggests, is purely sensory;    
– it arises from L2 and L3, travels downward lateral to the psoas muscle, crosses the iliacus muscle (deep to fascia), passes either thru or underneath the lateral aspect of the inguinal ligament, and finally travels onto innervate the lateral thigh;
– it divides into anterior and posterior branches and supplies skin on lateral aspect of thigh;
– in the study by Hospodar et al (JTO 1999), the course of the nerve was variable, but was most commonly found at 10-15 mm from the ASIS and as far medially as 46 mm from the ASIS;
– in no specimen did the nerve pass lateral to the ASIS (eventhough historically the nerve is thought to pass lateral to the ASIS in 10% of population);
– in all specimens the nerve passed underneath the ilioginal ligament and anterior to the iliacus muscle; 

– Meralgia Paresthetica: 

– entrapment syndrome of the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve causing burning, numbness, and paresthesias down the proximal-lateral aspect of the thigh;
– may be idiopathic, be a result of trauma, previous operations, and in some cases may arise from Perthes Disease abduction splints;
– in idiopathic cases, the nerve may be encased in bone by the growing apophysis of the anterior superior iliac spine, or may be entrapped in fascia either proximal or distal to the ASIS;    
– diagnosis is made by:           
– reproduction of the pain by deep palpation just below the anterior superior iliac spine and by hip extension;           
– relief of pain by localized injection of lidocaine;    
– treatment: when diagnosis is not in doubt and the symptoms are severe, consider operative decompression at the site of constriction;


Electromyography (EMG) and nerve conduction studies (NCS) are tests that measure the electrical activity of muscles and nerves. Nerves send out electrical signals to make your muscles react in certain ways. Nerves also send signals from your skin to your brain, which then processes the signals, so you can experience a variety of skin sensations.

  • An EMG Test looks at the electrical signals your muscles make when they are at rest and when they are being used.
  • A Nerve Conduction Study measures how fast and how well the body’s electrical signals travel along your nerves. EMG and nerve conduction studies are used to help diagnose a variety of muscle and nerve disorders and to quantify the severity of your condition.

An EMG test helps find out if muscles are responding the right way to nerve signals. Nerve conduction studies help diagnose nerve damage or disease. When EMG tests and nerve conduction studies are done together, they help doctors tell if your symptoms are caused by a muscle disorder or a nerve problem. With EMG and NCS studies, your doctor can next select the best therapeutic option to help you.