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Guillain-Barre syndrome, Neurologic disease, Paralysis, Muscle weakness, Central nervous system diseases



  1. Atkinson, Stephanie B. RN, MS, ANP-C
  2. Carr, Rebecca Lamb PhD, APRN, BC
  3. Maybee, Patricia EdD, FNP, FAANP
  4. Haynes, Donna PhD, APRN, BC, FNP


Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) is a randomly acquired inflammatory disease that affects approximately 2 persons in 100,000 annually. There have been no discriminating risk factors identified including age, sex, or race. The syndrome results in the demyelination of peripheral nerves, which leads to progressive motor weakness and paralysis. The critical care nurse should gain from this article an overview of Guillain-Barre syndrome during the acute phase. Included is the pathophysiology of the syndrome, clinical presentation, acute phase nursing assessment and management, and currently available treatment options.