How is postpolio progressive muscular atrophy (PPMA) treated?

Updated: Feb 20, 2018
  • Author: Sridharan Ramaratnam, MD, MBBS; Chief Editor: Helmi L Lutsep, MD  more...
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Trials with amantadine, high-dose steroids, human growth hormone, co-enzyme Q [56]  pyridostigmine [59] , modafanil [60] and bromocriptine all have been disappointing.

In a study of subcutaneous insulinlike growth factor-1 in 22 patients with PPMA, patients had enhanced recovery after fatiguing exercise. However, the treatment had no impact upon strength or exercise-induced fatigue.

Intravenous immunoglobulin probably has no beneficial effect on activity limitations but may have modest beneficial effect on muscle strength and pain. [61, 62, 63, 64, 65]

One trial with weak methods found that lamotrigine might be effective in reducing pain and fatigue, resulting in fewer activity limitations. Data from 2 single trials suggest that muscle strengthening of thumb muscles (very low-quality evidence) and static magnetic fields (moderate-quality evidence) are beneficial for improving muscle strength and pain, respectively, with unknown effects on activity limitations. These interventions, however, need further investigation.

Screening and treating patients for osteopenia or osteoporosis may be appropriate.

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