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Monday, July 20, 2015

Study on French MS Population Reveals Long Disease Duration is Associated with Higher Mortality

Study on French MS Population Reveals Long Disease Duration is Associated with Higher Mortality July 20, 2015
A study recently published in the journal PLoS One revealed an excess mortality rate among French patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) that experience the disease for more than 20 years. The study was conducted by researchers at several institutes and hospitals in France, and is entitled “Excess Mortality in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis Starts at 20 Years from Clinical Onset: Data from a Large-Scale French Observational Study.
MS is a chronic, progressive neurodegenerative disorder that results from an attack on the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord and optical nerves) by the body’s own immune system, causing inflammation and damage to the myelin layer that covers and protects neurons resulting in motor function impairment (coordination, balance, speech and vision), irreversible neurological disability and paralysis. MS mainly affects young adults, with the majority of the patients experiencing their first symptoms between 20 and 40 years of age. More than 2.3 million people in the world are estimated to suffer from MS, and there is currently no cure for the disease.
It was previously reported that MS patients have a reduced life expectancy in comparison to the general population. Researchers have now conducted a large-scale, observational, multicenter study (SURVIMUS) to analyze the specific mortality rate associated with MS in France. In total, 27,603 MS patients (mean age at onset of 33 years) were assessed in terms of life expectancy, mortality rates, causes of death, and prognostic factors in comparison to the French general population. All patients analyzed had clinical onset of the disease at least one year prior to the study.
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