Is there a relationship between comorbidity burden and severity of multiple sclerosis?

Takeaway

  • The use of a phenome-wide association study (PheWAS) approach identified 16 comorbid conditions significantly associated with increased severity of multiple sclerosis (MS), including genitourinary, infectious, metabolic, epilepsy and movement disorders.

Why this matters

  • Chronic neurological diseases like MS have a variable disease course and affect people with a wide range of coexisting medical conditions.

  • Previous research has linked the presence of comorbidities to a range of complications and poor outcomes in people with MS, including delays in diagnosis and treatment, increased hospitalization, decreased quality of life, and higher risk of death.

  • It is possible that comorbidity burden is an important determinant of disease course and outcomes of MS.