INTRODUCTION: The objective of this study was to determine whether the incidence rate of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) in Funen County, Denmark, increased during the 1996-2005 period. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Cases of GBS were identified retrospectively using hospital discharge diagnoses from the neurological department, Odense University Hospital, between 1996 and 2005. Hospital record data were evaluated and patients were included if they fulfilled the criteria of the National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders and Stroke for GBS or the criteria for Miller Fisher syndrome (MFS). The study period was divided into two five-year intervals, 1996-2000 and 2001-2005, which were compared with regard to incidence rate. RESULTS: The incidence rate was 1.57/100,000 person-years in 1996-2000 and 1.73/100,000 person-years in 2001-2005. The increase in the incidence rate was 0.17/100,000 person-years (95% confidence interval (CI): -0.65-0.98). The crude incidence rate for the entire period 1996-2005 was 1.65 /100,000 person-years. An antecedent infection was reported in 56% of the cases including respiratory infection (25%), gastrointestinal infection (21%) and influenza-like symptoms (10%). There was no significant difference in preceding events between 1996-2000 and 2001-2005 (p = 0.47). CONCLUSION: There was no significant change in the incidence rate of GBS during the study period. There was no clustering in time or by antecedent event. Our finding of an incidence rate of 1.65/100,000 person-years is in line with previously published studies.
Ugeskrift for Laeger, 2010, Vol 172, Issue 45, p. 3093-7