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December 1991

Ischemic Compression Paresthesias in Guillain-Barré Syndrome

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Neurology, St Elizabeth's Hospital, Boston, Mass.

Arch Neurol. 1991;48(12):1261-1262. doi:10.1001/archneur.1991.00530240065022

• An experiment in nine patients tested the similarities and interactions between the paresthesias of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) and tourniquet-induced compression paresthesias. During brachial compression, GBS paresthesias diminished in five of seven patients and new paresthesias occurred in two patients with purely motor GBS. Beginning 1 to 4 minutes after release of the cuff, all patients had new paresthesias, distinguishable from GBS symptoms. The novel finding was that GBS paresthesias diminished or ceased during the postcompression period in five of seven patients. Demyelinated peripheral nerves in GBS apparently can generate and transmit the spontaneous activity associated with paresthesias in the postcompression period. Interference occurs between the two types of paresthesias, possibly because both are caused by spontaneous ectopic activity in tactile nerves.

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