There is no cure for GBS. Treatment is aimed at reducing symptoms, treating complications, and speeding up recovery.
In the early stages of the illness, a treatment called apheresis or plasmapheresis may be given. This treatment involves removing or blocking the proteins, called antibodies, that attack the nerve cells. Another treatment is intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg). Both treatments lead to faster improvement, and both are equally effective. There is no advantage to using both treatments. Other treatments help reduce inflammation.
When symptoms are severe, treatment in the hospital will be needed. Breathing support will likely be given.
Other treatments in the hospital focus on preventing complications. These may include:
- Blood thinners to prevent blood clots
- Breathing support or a breathing tube and ventilator, if the diaphragm is weak
- Pain medicines or other medicines to treat pain
- Proper body positioning or a feeding tube to prevent choking during feeding, if the muscles used for swallowing are weak
- Physical therapy to help keep joints and muscles healthy