Keywords : Multiple sclerosis
Annals of the College of Medicine, Mosul,
Volume 40, Issue 2, Pages 63-68
Background: Multiple sclerosis is the major cause of non-traumatic disability in young adults worldwide with considerable social impact and economic consequences. It is a multifactorial disease with different epidemiological patterns and clinical presentations in various populations.
Aim: This study was conducted to calculate the disease prevalence in Nineveh Governorate, explaining the demographic features, characterizing the clinical and epidemiological features of multiple sclerosis, and finding possible variations in some features of the disease compared to other regions.
Materials and methods: A total of 136 patients from both sexes with confirmed MS who are living in Nineveh Governorate and attending MS Clinic at Ibn-Sina Teaching Hospital, were enrolled in this study during a period of 7 months from October 2011 to April 2012. Data were collected from filing system of MS Clinic and from direct interview with the patients (78 patients).
Results: The prevalence of MS calculated to be 4.72/100,000. MS affects females more than males in Nineveh (88 females- 64.7%; 48 males- 35.3%) with a female to male ratio (1.83:1), and a mean age of onset (30.9) years and mean age of presentation (39.5) years with an average delay of (8.5) years in diagnosis of the disease. The disease mostly affects the age range (20-50) years age. Family history was found in (8.8%) of patients. Most of MS patients in Nineveh were well educated and some of them with higher educational degrees, and majority of patients (68%) were living in Mosul city. The most frequent initial symptom of disease was weakness in one or more limbs (36.8%), followed by ataxia (14%), and visual disturbance (13.2%). A relapsing remitting pattern was the most frequent category of the disease (78.7%).
Conclusions: The study showed that MS is rare in Nineveh Governorate which is considered to be a low risk area for MS, and the characteristics of the disease are nearly comparable to findings of other studies in Iraq and Middle eastern region.