Myasthenia gravis is a chronic autoimmune neuromuscular disease that leads to muscle weakness. The disease is caused by destruction of a receptor between a nerve and a muscle by the body’s own immune system.
Patients with myasthenia gravis usually present with weakness of the eye muscles, difficulty swallowing or slurred speech. The patient’s symptoms are due to the degree of muscle weakness that can lead to unstable gate, shortness of breath, impaired speech and weakness of their arms.
A neurologist makes the diagnosis of myasthenia gravis by obtaining a careful history and physical along with blood tests and single fiber electromyography.
A CT of chest is performed to ensure that there is no thymoma in the thymus gland:
CT of chest—This study is performed in radiology. It is performed to determine if there is any mass that is causing compression of the phrenic nerve.
The thymus gland, located in the chest below the breastbone, is thought to cause the body’s own immune system to attack the receptors.
In our practice, we treat select patients with myasthenia gravis with robot-assisted thymectomy to decrease the overall impact of myasthenia gravis.