J Clin Pathol 58:994-995 doi:10.1136/jcp.2004.020354
  • Case report

Guillain Barré syndrome precipitated by the use of antilymphocyte globulin in the treatment of severe aplastic anaemia

  1. B Kaya1,
  2. C E Davies1,
  3. H E Oakervee1,
  4. N C Silver2,
  5. J Gawler2,
  6. J D Cavenagh1
  1. 1Department of Haematology, Barts and the London NHS Trust, London EC1A 7BE, UK
  2. 2Department of Neurology, Barts and the London NHS Trust
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr J D Cavenagh
 Department of Haematology, St Bartholomew’s Hospital, West Smithfield, London EC1A 7BE, UK;
  • Accepted 20 January 2005


This report describes the case of a 54 year old woman with very severe aplastic anaemia who was treated with antilymphocyte globulin (ALG) and developed Guillain Barré syndrome (GBS). No antecedent infective aetiology was identified. Although there are numerous reports of autoimmune disease after treatment with ALG in aplastic anaemia, and GBS after immunosuppressive treatment, there are none reporting GBS after the use of ALG for severe aplastic anaemia. The occurrence of autoimmune disease after immunosuppressive treatment, in particular ALG, is discussed, together with the possible mechanisms that result from T cell depression.


  • The patient gave her informed consent for this case report to be published.