Associated disorders in myasthenia gravis: autoimmune diseases and their relation to thymectomy

Acta Neurol Scand. 1989 Oct;80(4):290-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0404.1989.tb03881.x.


The prevalence of myasthenia gravis (MG) in the counties of Hordaland and Sogn & Fjordane on January 1, 1984 was 9.6 per 100,000 inhabitants. Other autoimmune diseases were found in 11 out of 48 MG patients. The occurrence of autoimmune thyroiditis (5 patients, 10.4%) and systemic lupus erythematosus (4 patients, 8.3%) in the MG patients was clearly higher than that reported in the general population. Rheumatoid arthritis was found in 2 patients (4.2%). The autoimmune diseases were mainly recorded among the nonthymectomized MG patients. In addition to those with definite diseases of autoimmune nature, 3 other MG patients had thyroid antibodies and 1 had antinuclear factor without clinical evidence of autoimmune disease. Seven MG patients (14.6%) had unspecific arthralgia during active periods of MG. Two MG patients had ankylosing spondylitis.

MeSH terms

  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / complications
  • Autoimmune Diseases / complications*
  • Autoimmune Diseases / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / complications
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Myasthenia Gravis / complications*
  • Myasthenia Gravis / epidemiology
  • Norway / epidemiology
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / complications
  • Thymus Gland / surgery*
  • Thyroiditis / complications