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Thursday, July 4, 2013

MS Presents Differently Among Family Members

Family members may share onset age of multiple sclerosis, but not disease severity. Sometimes multiple sclerosis (MS) runs in families. It has not been clear how similar the disease is between family members, however. MS is very variable in its symptoms and progression. 

Researchers at the University of Cambridge report a study which shows how the course of MS varies within families. The team looked at data on 2,310 individuals from over 1,000 families in which two or more members had MS. They looked at data on age of onset, disability, and disease severity. Age of onset tended to be similar between affected members of the same family. This was so whether parents and children or siblings were being compared. Siblings also tended to have similar patterns of progression. But there was no such relationship between parents and children.

There was also no correlation between the severity of the disease in one family member and its severity in another member. The cause of these observations is unknown – the underlying factors could be genetic or environmental. The findings have important implications for counseling patients with MS – they should not look to their relatives with MS for clues to the outcome of their own disease.

Source: MSFYi Internet Newsletter


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1 comment:

TinaB said...

I forwarded this post to my siblings. Our Mother had MS for 13 years. She stayed the same for a few years then progressed very quickly and passed away. We are always following the news and hope for a cure someday..
Your blog has been a useful tool in helping us keep up with the latest. Thank you!