Posted: 11 Feb, 2002
Brain scans can help produce a much earlier diagnosis of multiple sclerosis (ms), researchers have found, leading to hopes of improved treatments.
Researchers from the Institute of Neurology in London carried out MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans on 71 people with symptoms of the condition.
After an average follow-up of 14 years, 88 per cent of those people who had abnormal MRI results had developed ms, against 19 per cent of those whose MRI results were normal.
Nicola Russell, director of services for the MS Trust, said: "This study proves that MRI scans can accurately detect areas of damage within the brain and spine and this, together with other diagnostic procedures, may help to increase the speed of diagnosis for many people with ms.
"This will allow them to receive drugs at an earlier stage which will potentially increase their efficacy and could have far-reaching implications in terms of improving their quality of life."