Chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) is a neurological disorder characterized by slowly progressive weakness and a loss of sensation in the legs and arms. CIDP is more common in young adults, and it affects men more than women. Symptoms include tingling or numbness (beginning in the toes and fingers); weakness of the arms and legs; aching pain in the muscles; loss of deep tendon reflexes; fatigue; and abnormal sensation. CIDP is similar to Guillain-Barré syndrome, which appears suddenly and generally improves spontaneously. Although CIDP was once called “chronic Guillain-Barré syndrome,” it is now regarded as a related, but distinct condition.
The course of CIDP varies widely among individuals. Some may have a bout of CIDP followed by spontaneous recovery, while others may have many bouts with partial recovery in between relapses. The disease is a potentially treatable cause of inflammatory neuropathy and initiation of early treatment to prevent loss of nerve cells is recommended. However, some individuals may experience residual numbness or weakness.
Symptoms & Signs
(Not all symptoms and signs may be present.)
- Loss of reflexes
The degree of symptom severity varies with each individual. It may take months or a year for severe symptoms to develop.
Evaluation & Tests
(Not all evaluations and tests may be necessary.)
- Neurological exam 
- Electromyography 
- Nerve conduction velocity test 
- Spinal tap (lumbar puncture)
- Blood tests 
Treatment & Therapy
(Not all treatments and therapies may be indicated.)