Myasthenia gravis, a very often painful disease

Myasthenia gravis is not known to usually cause pain. 

However, 70% of patients feel it according to a study of 108 people followed for stable myasthenia gravis at the Raymond-Poincaré Hospital in Garches and presented at the Neuromuscular Days in Marseille, France, in September 2021. 

These pains are mainly muscular, axial and triggered by movement, standing, stress and cold. They tend to be calmed by muscle relaxation (stretching, massage, heat, rest, etc.) and level 1 analgesics (used by 39% of patients and effective in 76% of cases). 

They are less frequent and less lasting in patients with anti-MuSK autoantibodies. 

The evaluation of any patient with autoimmune myasthenia gravis should include looking for pain, which would be an indicator of muscle fatigue, useful for better management. 


Myasthénie et la douleur : une avancée dans la connaissance de la maladie. Friedman D. 24e Journées neuromusculaires de Marseille 9-10 sept. 2021