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This article is part of the supplement: Proceedings of 18th Pediatric Rheumatology European Society (PReS) Congress

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MyastheniaGravis(MG) in a patient with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis

Christiaan Scott1* and Asgar Kalla2

  • * Corresponding author: Christiaan Scott

Author Affiliations

1 Red Cross War Memorial Childrens Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa

2 Department of Rheumatology, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa

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Pediatric Rheumatology 2011, 9(Suppl 1):P185  doi:10.1186/1546-0096-9-S1-P185

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published:14 September 2011

© 2011 Scott and Kalla; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Myasthenia Gravis associated with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis has been reported in 5children with various subtypes of JIA [1,2].


We present a 17year old girl known with Rheumatoid Factor Positive Polyarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis for 4 years who developed Myasthenia Gravis while on therapy with Methotrexate, Prednisone and Ibuprofen.


This patient presented to the emergency room with a respiratory infection. She had been feeling weak and had noticed tongue weakness and difficulty swallowing, which had worsened significantly since the respiratory infection.

On examination she was found to have clinical signs of Right Middle Lobe pneumonia and was found to be weak, especially in her proximal muscle groups. She had bilateral ptosis as well as facial weakness. She had active arthritis in multiple joints. Despite intravenous antibiotics and full supportive management she deteriorated rapidly, and within 12 hours required intubation and ventilation.

The patient was found to have high ACH receptor antibodies and responded dramatically to pyridostygmine therapy, confirming the diagnosis of MG. High prednisone and azathioprine have been added to her regime.


Myasthenia Gravis is a rare association with JIA. The majority of cases appear to be associated with oligo-articular JIA. This patient presented after an acute infection and a recent worsening in her JIA symptoms.


  1. Gowing EC, McKown KM: Myasthenia gravis in a patient with pauciarticular juvenile chronic arthritis.

    J Clin Rheumatol 2002, 8(5):269-72. PubMed Abstract | Publisher Full Text OpenURL

  2. Bhettay EM, Kalla AA: Coexistence of myasthenia gravis and seropositive juvenile chronic arthritis.

    Clin Exp Rheumatol 1992, 10(5):499-501. PubMed Abstract OpenURL