Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

About Neuromyelitis Optica

Neuromyelitis Optica is an autoimmune disorder affecting the central nervous system of the body specifically the optic nerves and the spinal cord. It is also known by the name of Devic’s disease. This condition develops when the body’s immune system attacks the spinal cord and the optic nerves of the central nervous system. At times, the brain may also get affected due to Neuromyelitis Optica.

The primary cause as to why the immune system attacks the central nervous system is not known but studies suggest that it may be due to infections or some other autoimmune disorder which may lead to the development of Neuromyelitis Optica.

Vision problems with temporary or permanent blindness is the primary presenting symptom of this condition along with pain, balance difficulties and problems with bowel and bladder as a result of damage to the spinal cord. In cases where children get affected, they may experience seizures, altered mentation, or sometimes even coma as a result of Neuromyelitis Optica.

The primary question that patients with Neuromyelitis Optica come up with is whether this condition can be cured. This article gives a brief insight as to whether there is a cure for Neuromyelitis Optica.

Can Neuromyelitis Optica Be Cured?

Can Neuromyelitis Optica Be Cured?

Coming to the pertinent question as to whether there is a cure for Neuromyelitis Optica, then the answer to is no. Neuromyelitis Optica is a condition which cannot be cured. The treatment for this condition is symptomatic. Some of the methods used for treating Neuromyelitis Optica are high dose intravenous corticosteroids in the form of methylprednisolone. If this is ineffective then plasmapheresis is also an option for treating the symptoms of Neuromyelitis Optica. In this process the natural plasma in the blood is removed and replaced with artificial plasma substitute. This substitute is then returned back to the body. This process may be repeated a number of times for relief of symptoms.

Immune suppression is by far the most effective form of treatment for Neuromyelitis Optica. Towards this end, medications like CellCept and rituximab have shown to be quite effective in relieving the symptoms of Neuromyelitis Optica.

In conclusion, as of now there is no cure for Neuromyelitis Optica and treatment is basically directed towards relieving the symptoms of the condition. While corticosteroids have shown some effectiveness, plasmapheresis and immunosuppressants have been quite effective when it comes to relieving the symptoms of Neuromyelitis Optica.

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Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: June 2, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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