Pure motor chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy

J Neurol. 2001 Sep;248(9):772-7. doi: 10.1007/s004150170093.


We describe four patients affected by chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) in a pure motor form. Selective involvement of motor fibers was suggested by the absence of sensory symptoms, normal sensation at neurological examination and normal findings on electrophysiological testing of sensory fibres and sural nerve biopsy. The onset of the disease occurred at a young age (3-29 years) and the clinical course was relapsing-remitting. Over a follow-up period of 1.5-14 years, periodical clinical and electrophysiological examinations showed that selective involvement of motor fibers remained a constant feature. Electromyography and nerve conduction studies continued to show a purely demyelinating neuropathy without signs of axonal impairment. All patients were steroid-unresponsive, whereas they considerably improved after being treated with immunoglobulins. Two patients were treated with interferon alpha and showed a good response. In conclusion, the occurrence in our four patients of pure motor involvement over a long period of time during which several relapses occurred, suggests that pure motor CIDP may represent the result of a specific immunological process rather than of a random distribution of inflammation throughout peripheral nerves.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Child
  • Electromyography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous / therapeutic use
  • Interferon-alpha / therapeutic use
  • Male
  • Motor Neurons / physiology*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiopathology
  • Neural Conduction
  • Neurons, Afferent / physiology
  • Polyradiculoneuropathy, Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating / drug therapy
  • Polyradiculoneuropathy, Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating / physiopathology*
  • Recruitment, Neurophysiological
  • Recurrence
  • Retreatment
  • Steroids / therapeutic use


  • Immunoglobulins, Intravenous
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Steroids