The development of Guillain-Barre syndrome has demonstrated an association with existing hepatitis C virus infection and mixed cryoglobulinemia.
The development of Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) has demonstrated an association with existing hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and mixed cryoglobulinemia, according to a case study published in BMC Infectious Diseases. The subtype severe acute motor sensory axonal neuropathy was classified as a subtype of GBS through electromyography, associated with severe clinical presentation. Researchers noted that only 7 other cases of GBS associated hepatitis C have previously been reported.
This case study focused on a 56-year-old man with a 28 year history of intravenous drug addiction, and chronic respiratory failure as a result of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, who was admitted to the emergency department with complaints of areflexia and muscle weakness of all limbs. The patient also had an estimated 36 pack-year history of tobacco consumption, and at the time of admission to the hospital, he was receiving buprenorphine to treat his substance addiction. One year previous to admission, the patient was found to have positive immunoassay results for anti-HCV antibodies, HCV RNA viral load of 87 IU/mL, and significantly elevated liver enzymes. Four months prior to admission, chronicity of HCV infection was confirmed via a persistent, and further elevated viral load (25,200 U/mL).