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More MS news articles for August 2003

Risk for relatives of patients with multiple sclerosis in central Sardinia, Italy

Neuroepidemiology. 2003 Sep-Oct;22(5):290-6
Prokopenko I, Montomoli C, Ferrai R, Musu L, Piras ML, Ticca A, Murgia BS, Bernardinelli L.
Dipartimento Scienze Sanitarie Applicate e Psicocomportamentali - Sezione di Statistica Medica e Epidemiologia, Universita di Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, inflammatory, disabling disease of the central nervous system, known for its complex interplay between genetic and environmental factors.

We used life table techniques to calculate age-adjusted recurrence risks for different categories of relatives of MS patients from Central Sardinia (Italy), a genetically homogeneous, stable population with a high degree of consanguinity.

We included 313 probands and a total of 12,717 relatives in the analysis.

The overall age-adjusted recurrence risk for relatives of MS probands is 1.90% [95% confidence interval (CI): 1.57-2.30].

The age-adjusted recurrence risk in parents was 1.26% (95% CI 0.60-2.63), in children 2.33% (95% CI 0.09-5.56), in sibs 4.76% (95% CI 3.57-6.32), in second-degree relatives 0.72% (95% CI 0.42-1.22), and in third-degree relatives 1.79% (95% CI 1.27-2.51).

The sex of the probands (male) and of the relatives (female), and the number of affected relatives in the family significantly increase the risk of MS in relatives.