Have you heard the buzz about immunoglobulin IV treatments? It is not a “new” treatment, but is in the very early stages of gaining information about success rates for those who are severely ill with chronic neurological Lyme disease.
Have you heard the buzz about immunoglobulin IV treatments? It is not a “new” treatment, but is in the very early stages of gaining information about success rates for
those who are severely ill with chronic neurological Lyme disease.
The treatment is shortened to IVIG for ease of pronunciation.
The following information came directly from Business Wire. It’s a good primer for those of you who don’t fully understand the program:
1. What is IVIG or Intravenous Immune Globulin?
IVIg is a collection of Y shaped antibodies called
IgG as shown in the picture.
IVIg is a plasma product formed by taking antibodies from about 20,000 donors and mixing them together. IVIg has proven effective in several immune system disorders, including nearly all autoimmune conditions even CIDP and GBS. The sooner you can treat the patient with IVIg the better the results.
There is a window of opportunity usually within the first 18 months during which IVIg administration is ideal. The
longer you wait to treat with IVIg the longer it will take for IVIg to work.
After being exposed to toxins and poisonous chemicals including carbon monoxide the body’s immune system may mount a attack on the body. This autoimmune attack can be reduced by IVIG.
2. How does IVIG work?
For immune deficiency where the body does not make enough antibodies, IVIG supplies them. For autoimmune disorders like
GBS & CIDP, there is a abnormal autoantibody being formed which is inactivated by IVIG.
Patients with autoimmune disorders like CIDP also are deficient in antiidotype antibodies. IVIG has antiidotype antibodies and thus helps improve the patients condition. Antiidotype antibodies are normal antibodies which are produced in the absence of any antigen. They are capable of inactivating many different types of antigens. IVIg has a higher concentration of antiidotype antibodies.
3. How long does it take for IVIG treatment to have an effect?
After IVIg infusion, patients may see a response in their disease within 24- 48 hours. Some patients will have to wait 3-4 weeks to see an effect after IVIg. In a few no effect may be seen following IVIg infusion. If 4-5 cycles of IVIg do not show any response then try a different approach like plasmapheresis, cytotoxic or immune suppressants. The NIH recommends that if no response is
seen with IVIg infusions, then add steroids to the treatment plan.
Everyone is slightly different as it depends on how long has the disease process been going on. The sooner one treats the disease with IVIg the faster the response. No one can predict how a particular patient will respond to IVIg.