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What is CIDP?
Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, or CIDP, is a rare and progressive autoimmune disease* that affects the nerves in the arms and legs.2 In people with CIDP, the protective covering of the peripheral nerves† called myelin is damaged by the body’s own immune system.3,4 Damage to nerves and their myelin covering means that messages between the brain and various parts of the body get disrupted, and this can cause weakness and gradual loss of sensations and reflexes. Over time, this damage may lead to disability in the arms and legs.1
While there is no known cure for CIDP, it can be treated and symptoms may be reversed if caught early enough. It is critical to talk to a doctor immediately because permanent nerve damage cannot be reversed.3,5
*A disease in which the body's immune system attacks healthy cells
†The portion of the nervous system that is outside the brain and spinal cord
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- Koski CL. CIDP: Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy. Narberth, PA: GBS/CIDP Foundation International; 2012.
- Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy. University of Rochester Medical Center website. https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?ContentTypeID=134&ContentID=210. Accessed November 18, 2022.
- Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy. National Institutes of Health website. https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/000777.htm. Accessed November 18, 2022.
- What is the immune system? U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. https://www.vaccines.gov/basics/prevention/immune_system/. Accessed November 18, 2022.
- Köller H, Keiseier BC, Jander S, Hartung HP. Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy. N Engl J Med. 2005;352(13):1343-1356.