J Med Assoc Thai 2023; 106 (4):393-401

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The Use of Disease-Modifying Therapy (DMT) to Prevent Disability Progression in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in Thailand
Aungsumart S Mail, Kanjanakittichai N , Apiwattanakul M

Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the central nervous system that leads to significant disability and economic burden for patients, families, the health system, and society.

Objective: To describe the demographics, natural history, and effectiveness of disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) in MS patients.

Materials and Methods: The present study was a retrospective cohort study of patients diagnosed with MS at the Prasat Neurological Institute, a tertiary referral neurological center in Bangkok, Thailand, between June 1, 2010 and June 30, 2020. Demographic data, clinical characteristics, and disease course of MS patients were explored. The primary outcome of the present study was a comparison of time to events of clinical relapse, new magnetic resonance image (MRI) T2W activity, new MRI T1W with gadolinium (Gd) enhancement, and time to disability progression between patients who received DMT and patients without DMT.

Results: There were 102 patients diagnosed with MS. The female-to-male ratio was 2.4-to-1. The mean age at onset was 29.61±11.62 years. The phenotypic features of these patients were classified as RRMS 80.4%, SPMS 8.8%, PPMS 3.9%, and tumefactive demyelination 6.9%. Forty-eight patients (47.1%) received DMT, 28 (58.3%) received IFN-beta, 11 (22.9%) received fingolimod, seven (14.6%) received teriflunomide, and two (4.2%) received rituximab. Results demonstrated that patients who did not received DMT had significantly more clinical disability compared to patients who received DMT (HR 2.97; 95% CI 1.01 to 8.73; p=0.048). However, the times to clinical relapse and MRI activity, including new T2W and new T1W Gd enhancing lesion, were not significantly different between the two groups.

Conclusion: Patients with a relapsing-remitting phenotype tended to progress to severe disability within ten years. Treatment with DMT may delay disability progression in patients with MS.

Keywords: Multiple sclerosis (MS); Disease-modifying therapy (DMT)

DOI: 10.35755/jmedassocthai.2023.04.13824

Received 19 December 2022 | Revised 26 January 2023 | Accepted 6 February 2023

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