Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Multiple sclerosis activity changes with the seasons, research finds

Date:
August 31, 2010
Source:
American Academy of Neurology
Summary:
New research shows that multiple sclerosis activity can increase during spring and summer months.

New research shows that multiple sclerosis (MS) activity can increase during spring and summer months. The research is published in the August 31, 2010, issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

"Our results showed that the appearance of lesions on brain scans was two to three times higher in the months of March to August, compared to other months of the year," said study author Dominik Meier, PhD, of Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and a member of the American Academy of Neurology.

For the study, researchers compared MRI brain scans of 44 people taken from 1991 to 1993 to weather data from the same time period. Participants were between the ages of 25 and 52 with untreated MS. Each person had eight weekly scans, then eight scans every other week followed by six monthly check-ups, for an average of 22 scans per person.

Weather information included daily temperature, solar radiation and precipitation measurements for the Boston area.

After one year, 310 new lesions were found in 31 people. Thirteen people had no new lesions during the study. "Not only were more lesions found during the spring and summer seasons, our study also found that warmer temperatures and solar radiation were linked to disease activity," said Meier. There was no link found between precipitation and lesions.

"This is an important study because it analyzes records from the early 1990's, before medications for relapsing MS were approved, so medicines likely could not affect the outcome. A study like this probably won't be able to be repeated," said Anne Cross, MD, with the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, who wrote an editorial about the study. Cross is also a member of the American Academy of Neurology. "Future studies should further explore how and why environmental factors play a role in MS."

One significant aspect of the research is that clinical trials often use MRI to assess the effectiveness of a drug and studies commonly last between 6 and 12 months. If the study ran from spring to winter, it might appear that lesions decreased due to drug effect but the cause might just be change of season. The opposite would occur if a study started in winter and lasted through the spring and summer.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Academy of Neurology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. D.S. Meier, K.E. Balashov, B. Healy, H.L. Weiner, and C.R.G. Guttmann. Seasonal prevalence of MS disease activity. Neurology, 2010; 75 (9): 799 DOI: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181f0734c

Cite This Page:

American Academy of Neurology. "Multiple sclerosis activity changes with the seasons, research finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 August 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100830192931.htm>.
American Academy of Neurology. (2010, August 31). Multiple sclerosis activity changes with the seasons, research finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100830192931.htm
American Academy of Neurology. "Multiple sclerosis activity changes with the seasons, research finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100830192931.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 18, 2014) — Researchers at The National University of Singapore have invented a new microneedle patch that could offer a faster and less painful delivery of drugs such as insulin and painkillers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) — The first nurse to be diagnosed with Ebola at a Dallas hospital walked down the stairs of an executive jet into an ambulance at an airport in Frederick, Maryland, on Thursday. Pham will be treated at the National Institutes of Health. (Oct. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) — A Caribbean cruise ship carrying a Dallas health care worker who is being monitored for signs of the Ebola virus is heading back to Texas, US, after being refused permission to dock in Cozumel, Mexico. (Oct. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) — All four suspected Ebola cases admitted to hospitals in Spain on Thursday have tested negative for the deadly virus in a first round of tests, the government said Friday. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins