• Is new medication for myasthenia gravis available in the U.S.?


    Question:

    I have ocular myasthenia gravis (or MG, a condition that can weaken and tire muscles) and am suffering from double vision and ptosis (droopy eyelid) on my left eye. I read about the use of dexamethasone and lidocaine in China. It’s injected into the affected eye muscle and controls symptoms within a week. Is this something that has been done in the U.S. and is it FDA-approved?


    Answer:

    I am familiar with the use of a similar anesthetic (Bupivicaine) placed into an eye muscle to treat strabismus (misaligned eyes) pioneered by Dr. Alan Scott for patients with misaligned eyes not due to MG.

    Bupivicaine was not effective for  strabismus in CPEO (a condition that weakens eye muscle movements), and has not been studied in the U.S. for MG. Bupivicaine does improve some cases of acquired mild ptosis and may be worth trying experimentally for mild ptosis in patients who have otherwise recovered from MG. This therapy has not been vetted in the U.S. and is not FDA-approved.


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