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(LEMS Disease) LAM Eaton Myasthenic Syndrome

twheeler
Posts: 5
Joined: Apr 2004

Does anyone have this LEMS that is associated with small cell lung cancer? Looking for someone who is experiencing this so I can help my mother.

Yammi
Posts: 6
Joined: Apr 2004

Hi, I have a friend who was diagnosed with LEMS a few months ago. I found some information for her and would like to share it with you. Please let me know if that's helpful...Good luck!

What is Lambert-Eaton Myasthenic Syndrome?
Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome (LEMS) is a disorder of the neuromuscular junction-the site where nerve cells meet muscle cells and help activate the muscles. It is caused by a disruption of electrical impulses between these nerve and muscle cells. LEMS is an autoimmune condition; in such disorders the immune system, which normally protects the body from foreign organisms, mistakenly attacks the body¡¯s own tissues. The disruption of electrical impulses is associated with antibodies produced as a consequence of this autoimmunity. Symptoms include muscle weakness, a tingling sensation in the affected areas, fatigue, and dry mouth. LEMS is closely associated with cancer, in particular small cell lung cancer. More than half the individuals diagnosed with LEMS also develop small cell lung cancer. LEMS may appear up to 3 years before cancer is diagnosed.

Is there any treatment?
There is no cure for LEMS. Treatment is directed at decreasing the autoimmune response (through the use of steroids, plasmapheresis, or high-dose intravenous immunoglobulin) or improving the transmission of the disrupted electrical impulses by giving drugs such as di-amino pyridine or pyridostigmine bromide (Mestinon). For patients with small cell lung cancer, treatment of the cancer is the first priority.

What is the prognosis?
The prognosis for individuals with LEMS varies. Those with LEMS not associated with malignancy have a benign overall prognosis. Generally the presence of cancer determines the prognosis.

What research is being done?
The NINDS supports research on neuromuscular disorders such as LEMS with the ultimate goal of finding ways to treat, prevent, and cure them.

I provided the link to the website that might be useful to you:
http://www.ninds.nih.gov/health_and_medical/disorders/lambert-eaton.htm#Is_there_any_treatment

Some other information about Small Cell Lung Cancer:
This type of lung cancer accounts for about 20% of all lung cancers.
It starts in the hormonal cells in the lung.
Subtypes of small cell lung cancer include: oat cell or lymphocytic, intermediate, and combined (small cell combined with squamous or adenocarcinoma). Their natural history is virtually identical.
Small cell lung cancers most commonly start in the central part of the chest (95%).

twheeler
Posts: 5
Joined: Apr 2004

THANK YOU! Can you tell me what type of symtoms your friend has. My mother has been going through this for 2 years. It was only 7 months ago they said she has small cell lung cancer. Then identified the LEMS. She is off all medications and went through blood cleansing. She has made it through Chemo with flying colors and now she's trying to regain her strength. People look at her and say she is a very depressed. Her voice is weak, her limbs are weak and she sleeps a lot. She says depression is part of it, but her overall body just feels weak. She feels very alone in this. We offer support, but we will never really know what she is experiencing. Thanks for your help. I hope your friend is coping well with this LEMS.

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