Efficacy of Plasma Exchange Treatment for Demyelinating Optic Neuritis Associated with Various Serum Antibodies: A Prospective Cohort Study

Junxia Fu, Yongping Wang, Hongen Li, Huanfen Zhou, Honglu Song, Mingming Sun, Quangang Xu, Shaoying Tan (Corresponding Author), Shihui Wei (Corresponding Author)

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Introduction: To evaluate the value of plasma exchange (PE) for patients with three subtypes of demyelinating optic neuritis (ON): aquaporin-4 (AQP4) antibody-positive ON (AQP4-ON), myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG) antibody-positive ON (MOG-ON), and AQP4 and MOG double-antibody-seronegative ON (D-ON). Methods: A single-center prospective study compared the logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution (logMAR) best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) at most severe onset, 1 day before intravenous high-dose methylprednisolone (IVMP) treatment, 1 day before PE treatment, after five-cycles of PE therapy, and at 1-, 3-, and 6-month follow-up visits. The proportions of eyes in each visual outcome category were also compared. Logistic regression and a receiver operating characteristic curve were used to analyze predicted factors for VA improvement. Results: A total of 124 ON attacks of 122 patients were included. No significant differences were found in BCVA (P = 0.659) before and after PE therapy for 22 D-ON attacks, but VA improved in two of six MOG-ON patients. In 95 AQP4-ON patients suffering 96 attacks, the mean logMAR BCVA markedly improved and was steadily maintained after five-cycles of PE treatments (adjusted P < 0.001), with VA exhibiting a significantly increasing trend (adjusted P = 0.001) after PE treatment. The combination of the number of previous ON episodes and the time window to PE treatment showed accuracy of 74.7% for predicting an improvement in BCVA score ≥ 2 levels. In addition, a combination of logMAR VA before PE and the time window to PE treatment resulted in 83.4% accuracy in predicting whether VA would regain 1.0 logMAR. Conclusion: PE therapy effectively improves visual outcomes for AQP4-ON patients, but offers limited value for D-ON patients. Early initiation greatly increases likelihood of achieving VA improvement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)797-813
Number of pages17
JournalNeurology and Therapy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2022


  • Acute Optic Neuritis
  • Plasma Exchange
  • Efficacy
  • Antibody


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