MYASTHENIA GRAVIS AND PSYCHIATRIC PROBLEMS
BARAL KULAKSIZOĞLU, Mehdiye Işın
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Myasthenia gravis (MG) is a chronic, auto-immune disease involving neuromuscular junctions with the frequent symptoms, such as loss of muscle strength, difficulty in respiration and swallowing, diplopia and ptosis. All chronic diseases including MG have psychiatric reflections in terms of coping and adaptation. Psychiatric morbidity usually appears as anxiety disorders such as panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and depressive disorders. Psychiatric symptoms may overlap with the actual disease symptoms such as fatigue, lack of energy and shortness of breath. They may be misdiagnosed as true myasthenic symptoms which may lead to unnecessarily high dose drug administration. Differentiation of the etiology of these symptoms might alter the treatment choice and affects the success rate and patients well-being. A better standard of care for MG patients requires psychiatric consultation and evaluation during the course of illness which may help the patients to achieve a better quality of life.
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