Of 52 patients fulfilling the criteria of chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, 20 (38%) did not improve after intravenous immunoglobulin treatment, two (4%) had a short-lasting improvement and subsequent infusions had no effect, nine (17%) reached a spontaneously or therapeutically induced complete remission, and 21 patients (40%) needed intermittent infusions to maintain improvement. All patients who improved initially had symptoms that significantly interfered with life-style. After treatment, 90% of these patients were independent in their daily activities. Significantly associated with improvement were disease duration of less than 1 year, progression of weakness until treatment, absence of discrepancy in weakness between arms and legs, areflexia of the arms, and slowed nerve conduction velocity of the motor median nerve. The probability of improvement if all these features are present in 93%.