Cary D. Buckner, M.D. talks about plasma exchange as a Myasthenia Gravis treatment.
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Plasma Exchange Treatment for Myasthenia Gravis Male1: There are a few other treatments that can be used for Myasthenia Gravis and one is called plasma exchange. And essentially plasma exchange, they actually remove the antibodies from the blood. This has been shown to improve outcomes in people with Myasthenia Crisis but in some patients I use it periodically to help us get through that period where I told you that Imuran I use sometimes take several months to work and so I have someone on plasma exchange every three weeks or once a month until the Imuran starts working. IVIg is also can be used and it’s intravenous injection which is periodically given and it works. We use it similar to the plasma exchange. Periodically, it can be given. Usually, it’s given in crisis to shorten crisis but can be given periodically because it usually works quickly in a few days and it lasts for three weeks, four weeks and just a few more words about plasma exchange that’s usually done in a dialysis unit. It’s not dialysis but usually the people who do that also do the plasma exchange. Male2: One of the side effects would be it takes your antibodies against the infections that you have had, vaccines for it could take it out of the body— Male1: Yes, all this treatments, all the immune suppressants put you at risks for infection. Male2: So, that’s one negative from the positive. Male1: And that’s a side effect, yeah. Yeah, there’s always a risk of benefits to all treatments.