November 28, 2001
Berlex Laboratories Inc.ís Betaseron (interferon beta-1b) may delay health-related quality-of-life deterioration in patients with secondary progressive MS, new research showed.
In the study, 718 patients received either Betaseron or placebo for up to three years.
Researchers determined patientsí health-related quality of life using a self-report questionnaire, which examined the patientís perception of the impact MS had on their everyday life.
Quality of life measurements were taken at the beginning of the study and at six-month intervals thereafter for 36 months.
During the first 18 months, the Betaseron treatment group reported small but consistent improvements in the overall quality of life. From 24 months onward, a gradual deterioration was apparent.
In contrast, placebo-treated patients reported a gradual deterioration in their overall quality of life from the first assessment onward.
Researchers also assessed quality-of-life subscales related to physical and psychosocial health. Physical health was related to patientsí body care and walking and movement ability and psychosocial health was related to their social interaction, communication, alertness and emotional behavior.
Both treatment groups reported a steady deterioration in physical functioning from the first assessment onward. However, there was a trend for a lessening of deterioration in the Betaseron group compared with the placebo group at each assessment interval.
In addition, both groups reported small improvements in psychosocial aspects of quality of life for the first six months. Such improvement continued until month 30 in the Betaseron group, but deteriorated in the placebo group for the remainder of the study.
The study appears in the Nov. 26
issue of Neurology.
© 2001 Spotlight Health