The thymus is a gland located in the front of the chest, just behind the breast bone and in front of the heart, in an area known as the anterior mediastinum. It is part of the body’s immune system and plays the biggest role in a child’s early development. Currently, thymectomy, surgery to remove the thymus, has been a mainstay in the treatment of myasthenia gravis, although there is still no conclusive evidence about its benefits for myasthenic patients.
Surgical removal of the thymus has no effect on the immune system after birth. In patients with myasthenia gravis and for whom a thymectomy is recommended, the goal is to remove the source of abnormal antibody production that causes the disease.
The benefits of thymectomy for a myasthenic person can be:
– Reduce patient weakness;
– Reduce the use of medicines;
– Achieve permanent remission of the disease.
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