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A study of patients with aggressive multiple sclerosis at disease onset

Authors Kaunzner U, Kumar G, Askin G, Gauthier S, Nealon N, Vartanian T, Perumal J

Received 4 May 2016

Accepted for publication 25 May 2016

Published 1 August 2016 Volume 2016:12 Pages 1907—1912

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/NDT.S111885

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Prof. Dr. Roumen Kirov

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Roger Pinder


Ulrike W Kaunzner,1 Gaurav Kumar,2 Gulce Askin,3 Susan A Gauthier,1 Nancy N Nealon,1 Timothy Vartanian,1 Jai S Perumal1

1Judit Jaffe Multiple Sclerosis Center, Weill-Cornell Medical College, New York City, NY, 2Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, 3Institute for Biostatistics and Epidemiology, Weill-Cornell Medical College, New York City, NY, USA

Objective: Identify aggressive onset multiple sclerosis (AOMS) and describe its clinical course.
Methods: AOMS patients were identified from a multiple sclerosis (MS) database based on a set of criteria. The subsequent clinical course of AOMS patients was then reviewed with the goal of potentially identifying the best approaches to manage these patients.
Results: Fifty-eight of 783 (7.4%) patients in the MS database met the criteria for AOMS, and 43 patients who had complete data for the duration of their follow-up were included in the subsequent analysis. The mean duration of the follow-up was 54 months. Thirty-five patients (81%) were started on a conventional first-line agent (injectable therapies for MS). Only two of these 35 patients (5.7%) had no evidence of disease activity. Twenty-two of 35 patients suffering from refractory disease were switched to a more aggressive treatment (natalizumab, rituximab, alemtuzumab, cyclophosphamide). Eight patients were started on aggressive treatment as their initial therapy, and seven of these eight (87.5%) patients showed no evidence of disease activity.
Conclusion: With recognition of the crucial significance of early optimal treatment during the potential window of opportunity for best long-term outcomes, we describe AOMS within 1 year of disease onset and discuss possible treatment considerations for these patients.

Keywords: aggressive multiple sclerosis, algorithm, treatment course, database, retrospective analysis

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