Neuropathy and myopathy in primary Sjögren's syndrome: neurophysiological, immunological and muscle biopsy results

Acta Neurol Scand. 1990 Aug;82(2):126-31. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0404.1990.tb01601.x.


Seventeen consecutive patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome (PSS) received neurophysiological examination, analysis of antibodies against peripheral nerve-myelin (PNM) and muscle biopsy, to show the prevalence and characteristics of peripheral neuropathy (PN) and myopathy; 3 PSS cases showed a clinical mild sensorimotor polyneuropathy, 1 of them had been treated with cytostatic drugs; 1 had mononeuropathia multiplex; and 1 clinical carpal tunnel syndrome. In these 5 patients neurophysiological investigation verified the clinical diagnosis of peripheral nerve involvement; 2 with PN had serum-antibodies against PNM; 1 of IgM-, and 1 of IgA-isotype. Muscle biopsies were taken from 15 PSS patients; 11 showed inflammatory myositis or inflammatory perivascular infiltrates and 3 showed signs of denervation. A combination of inflammation and morphological signs of myopathy, compatible with the biopsy diagnosis of polymyositis, was seen in 4, 1 of whom showed clinical signs of polymyositis. We conclude that the peripheral nervous and muscular systems are often involved in PSS, but commonly with relatively mild symptoms and laboratory findings. The common findings of inflammatory myopathy indicate an immune reaction in muscles in addition to other autoimmune manifestations of the disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Autoantibodies / analysis
  • Biopsy
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscles / pathology*
  • Myelin Sheath / immunology
  • Myositis / diagnosis
  • Neural Conduction*
  • Peripheral Nerves / immunology
  • Peripheral Nerves / physiopathology*
  • Sjogren's Syndrome* / immunology
  • Sjogren's Syndrome* / pathology
  • Sjogren's Syndrome* / physiopathology


  • Autoantibodies