Guillain-Barre Syndrome Neurological Disorder. Guillain Barre Syndrome (GBS) is a severe neurological disorder that may occur frequently in healthy individuals, either spontaneously or after certain infections. Guillain Barre Syndrome generally causes increasing weakness in the legs and arms that can be severe and require hospitalization. Guillain Barre Syndrome is an inflammatory disorder of the peripheral nerves. Guillain-Barre Syndrome is a rare disorder; its incidence is approximately 1 to 2 cases in every 100,000 people per year. Men and women, young and old, are equally prone to contracting Guillain-Barre Syndrome. A small number of cases have been known to occur after medical procedures such as minor surgery.
The causes of Guillain-Barre Syndrome are not known; however, in about half of all cases, the onset of the Syndrome follows a viral or bacterial infection such as the following: gastrointestinal viral infection; infectious mononucleosis; viral hepatitis; campylobacteriosis (usually from eating undercooked poultry); porphyria (rare disease of red blood cells); flu or common cold.
The initial symptoms of Guillain-Barre Syndrome are usually numbness or tingling (paresthesia) in the toes and fingers with progressive weakness in the arms and legs over the next few days. Some patients experience paresthesia only in their toes and legs; others only experience symptoms on one side of the body.
The symptoms may stay in this stage, causing only mild difficulty in walking, requiring crutches or a walking stick. Sometimes the illness progresses, leading to complete paralysis of the arms and legs. About one quarter of the time, the paralysis continues up the chest and freezes the breathing muscles, leaving the patient dependent on a ventilator. If the swallowing muscles are also affected, a feeding tube may be needed.
Recently the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported they are investigating five reports of Guillain Barre Syndrome in teenagers who have taken Menactra, a new vaccine for meningitis.
Legal Help For Victims Affected By Guillain-Barre Syndrome
If you or a loved one has taken prescription medications to treat Meningitis and been diagnosed with Guillain Barre Syndrome, please fill out the form at the right for a free case evaluation by a qualified defective drug attorney or call us at 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).