What is opthalmoneuromyelitis?
Neuromyelitis optica, also known as Devic disease (DD), is a chronic disorder of nerve tissue characterized by inflammation of the optic nerve (optic neuritis) and inflammation of the spinal cord (myelitis). There appear to be two forms of this disease. In the classical, but less common monophasic type, one or both optic nerves and the spinal cord are affected by a series of attacks over a short period of time (days or weeks) but, after the initial outburst, there is no recurrence. The second form is more common and is characterized by repeated attacks separated by periods of remission. In this form, the interval between attacks may be weeks, months or years. In its early stages, Devic disease may be confused with multiple sclerosis.
What are the symptoms for opthalmoneuromyelitis?
Shooting or numbing symptom was found in the opthalmoneuromyelitis condition
Neuromyelitis optica can cause Blindness in one or both eyes, Weakness or Paralysis in the legs or arms, painful spasms, loss of sensation, uncontrollable Vomiting and hiccups, and bladder or bowel dysfunction from spinal cord damage. Children can have confusion, Seizures or Coma with NMO. Neuromyelitis optica flare-ups might be reversible, but they can be severe enough to cause permanent visual loss and problems with walking.
What are the causes for opthalmoneuromyelitis?
The cause of neuromyelitis optica is usually unknown, although it sometimes appears after an infection, or it can be associated with another autoimmune condition. Neuromyelitis optica is often misdiagnosed as multiple sclerosis (MS) or perceived as a type of MS, but NMO is a distinct condition.
What are the treatments for opthalmoneuromyelitis?
Neuromyelitis optica can't be cured, though long-term remission is sometimes possible with the right management. NMO treatment involves therapies to reverse recent symptoms and prevent future attacks.
What are the risk factors for opthalmoneuromyelitis?
Opthalmoneuromyelitis, also known as Devic disease, is an acquired condition triggered by autoimmune reactions and certain microbial infections. However, some studies suspect the involvement of genetic factors. It is a rare chronic demyelinating disorder that affects the optic nerve and spinal cord. There are two forms: monophasic and relapsing. Monophasic occurs once that lasts for 30 to 60 days. Whereas it recurs in a relapsing type, as episodes separated by a period of recovery lasting months or years apart.
Few studies have shown links between some factors and the disease, while some studies are still underway to establish risk factors for the disease. Some evident factors are as follows:
1. Autoimmune disorders: A few studies have recorded the disease in patients with familial history of autoimmune disorders. Therefore, it is considered a risk factor.
2. Lifestyle factors: With the backing of pieces of evidence produced by a study conducted in 2018, some lifestyle factors have been associated with the disease.
They include long-term smoking, passive smoking, and long-term consumption of whiskey or vodka. They are risk factors for immunoglobulin G positivity. In addition, there is a link between smoking and the development of autoantibodies, which induce autoimmunity.
3. High levels of saturated fatty acids: A study has shown a link between high consumption of bad fats (animal and trans fats) and devic disease.
Eye pain,Loss of vision,Colors appearing faded or less vivid,Weakness in the arms and legs,Pain in the arms or legs – described as sharp, burning, shooting or numbing,Increased sensitivity to cold and heat,Tight and painful muscle spasms in the arms and legs,Vomiting,Bladder, bowel, and sexual problems
The immune system damages the spinal cord and the nerves of the eyes (optic nerves)
Steroids to reduce the inflammation,Medicine to suppress your immune system and ease your symptoms, such as azathioprine, mycophenolate or methotrexate,Rituximab, a newer type of medicine to reduce inflammation
Is there a cure/medications for opthalmoneuromyelitis?
Reversing recent symptoms. In the early stage of an NMO attack, your doctor might give you a corticosteroid medication, methylprednisolone (Solu-Medrol), through a vein in your arm (intravenously). You'll be given the medication for about five days, and then the medication will be tapered off slowly over several days.
Plasma exchange is frequently recommended as the first or second treatment, usually in addition to steroid therapy. In this procedure, some blood is removed from your body, and blood cells are mechanically separated from fluid (plasma). Doctors mix your blood cells with a replacement solution and return the blood to your body.
Doctors can also help manage other possible symptoms, such as pain or muscle problems.
Preventing future attacks. Doctors might recommend that you take a lower dose of corticosteroids over time to prevent future NMO attacks and relapses.
Your doctor might also recommend taking a medication that suppresses your immune system. Immunosuppressive medications that may be prescribed include azathioprine (Imuran, Azasan), mycophenolate (Cellcept) or rituximab (Rituxan).