Guillain-Barré syndrome

noun

Guil·​lain-Bar·​ré syndrome ˌgē-ˌlan-ˌbä-ˈrā- How to pronounce Guillain-Barré syndrome (audio)
ˌgē-yaⁿ-
: an uncommon autoimmune disorder of sudden onset that is an inflammatory neuropathy affecting the peripheral nervous system, that is initially marked by tingling, numbness, weakness, or loss of sensation in the feet and legs usually spreading to the arms, upper body, and face, that often causes severe nerve pain and breathing difficulties and sometimes progresses to paralysis and in rare instances death

Note: The cause of Guillain-Barré syndrome is unknown but individuals often experience onset a few weeks after a respiratory or gastrointestinal illness. Recovery from Guillain-Barré syndrome typically occurs within six to twelve months from initial onset but may take up to three years. Upon recovery, some individuals may have residual numbness, tingling, and weakness.

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Word History

Etymology

Georges Guillain †1961 French physician and Jean A. Barré †1967 French neurologist

First Known Use

1939, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Guillain-Barré syndrome was in 1939

Dictionary Entries Near Guillain-Barré syndrome

Guilin

Guillain-Barré syndrome

Guillaume

Cite this Entry

“Guillain-Barré syndrome.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Guillain-Barr%C3%A9%20syndrome. Accessed 6 Oct. 2022.

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Medical Definition

Guillain-Barré syndrome

noun

Guil·​lain-Bar·​ré syndrome ˌgē-ˌlan-ˌbä-ˈrā- How to pronounce Guillain-Barré syndrome (audio) ˌgē-yaⁿ- How to pronounce Guillain-Barré syndrome (audio)
: an uncommon autoimmune disorder of sudden onset that is an inflammatory neuropathy affecting the peripheral nervous system, that is initially marked by tingling, numbness, weakness, or loss of sensation in the feet and legs usually spreading to the arms, upper body, and face, that often causes severe nerve pain and breathing difficulties, and sometimes progresses to paralysis and in rare instances death

Note: The cause of Guillain-Barré syndrome is unknown but individuals often experience onset a few weeks after a respiratory or gastrointestinal illness. Recovery from Guillain-Barré syndrome typically occurs within six to twelve months from initial onset but may take up to three years. Upon recovery, some individuals may have residual numbness, tingling, and weakness.

abbreviation GBS

called also Landry's paralysis

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