Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) is an autoimmune neurological disorder often preceded by viral illnesses or, more rarely, vaccinations. We report on a unique combination of postcoronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine GBS that occurred months after a parainfectious COVID-19-related GBS. Shortly after manifesting COVID-19 symptoms, a 57-year-old man developed diplopia, right-side facial weakness, and gait instability that, together with electrophysiology and cerebrospinal fluid examinations, led to a diagnosis of post-COVID-19 GBS. The involvement of cranial nerves and IgM seropositivity for ganglioside GD1b were noteworthy. COVID-19 pneumonia, flaccid tetraparesis, and autonomic dysfunction prompted his admission to ICU. He recovered after therapy with intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIg). Six months later, GBS recurred shortly after the first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. Again, the GBS diagnosis was confirmed by cerebrospinal fluid and electrophysiology studies. IgM seropositivity extended to multiple gangliosides, namely for GM3/4, GD1a/b, and GT1b IgM. An IVIg course prompted complete recovery. This case adds to other previously reported observations suggesting a possible causal link between SARS-CoV-2 and GBS. Molecular mimicry and anti-idiotype antibodies might be the underlying mechanisms. Future COVID-19 vaccinations/revaccinations in patients with previous para-/post-COVID-19 GBS deserve a reappraisal, especially if they are seropositive for ganglioside antibodies.

Case Report: Post-COVID-19 Vaccine Recurrence of Guillain-Barré Syndrome Following an Antecedent Parainfectious COVID-19-Related GBS

Bellucci, Margherita;Germano, Francesco;Grisanti, Stefano;Castellano, Chiara;Tazza, Francesco;Visigalli, Davide;Novi, Giovanni;Massa, Federico;Durando, Paolo;Cabona, Corrado;Schenone, Angelo;Benedetti, Luana
2022-01-01

Abstract

Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) is an autoimmune neurological disorder often preceded by viral illnesses or, more rarely, vaccinations. We report on a unique combination of postcoronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine GBS that occurred months after a parainfectious COVID-19-related GBS. Shortly after manifesting COVID-19 symptoms, a 57-year-old man developed diplopia, right-side facial weakness, and gait instability that, together with electrophysiology and cerebrospinal fluid examinations, led to a diagnosis of post-COVID-19 GBS. The involvement of cranial nerves and IgM seropositivity for ganglioside GD1b were noteworthy. COVID-19 pneumonia, flaccid tetraparesis, and autonomic dysfunction prompted his admission to ICU. He recovered after therapy with intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIg). Six months later, GBS recurred shortly after the first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. Again, the GBS diagnosis was confirmed by cerebrospinal fluid and electrophysiology studies. IgM seropositivity extended to multiple gangliosides, namely for GM3/4, GD1a/b, and GT1b IgM. An IVIg course prompted complete recovery. This case adds to other previously reported observations suggesting a possible causal link between SARS-CoV-2 and GBS. Molecular mimicry and anti-idiotype antibodies might be the underlying mechanisms. Future COVID-19 vaccinations/revaccinations in patients with previous para-/post-COVID-19 GBS deserve a reappraisal, especially if they are seropositive for ganglioside antibodies.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11567/1109905
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