Spinal Cord MRI In Multiple Sclerosis

Importance Of Determining Degree Of Atrophy As A Marker Of Disease Course

De Seze J, Ayachi M, Stojkovic T, Gauvrit JY, Saint Michel T, Pruvo J, Vermersch P
Rev Neurol (Paris) 2000 May;156(5):491-6
Service de Neurologie et de NeuroRadiologie, Hopital R. Salengro, CHRU de Lille, Lille, France
PMID# 10844368; UI# 20305183

Spinal Cord Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is of particular interest in the management of Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

Especially in Primary/Progressive forms. Most of the DeMyelinating lesions are located in the Cervical or Dorsal Cord.

Spinal Cord area reduction has been recently correlated with the progression of disability (Losseff et al., 1996, Lycklama a Nijeholt et al., 1997).

The aim of this study was to confirm this first result, to assess the reproducibility of this method and to correlate DeMyelinating Lesions with Spinal Cord Area reduction.

Fifty two patients were included and compared with 15 controls (normal subjects). T1 Sagittal and Axial plane images were performed to localized hypersignal lesions.

Spinal Cord area was obtained by a volume acquired inversion prepared Fast Spoiled Gradient Echo Acquisition (MP-Rage) sequence.

We compared the mean area value with clinical parameters (age, course of the disease, Expanded Disability Status Scale [EDSS]) and with the number and location of DeMyelinating lesions.

DeMyelinating lesions were found in 82p.100 of MS patients and in none of controls. Mean Spinal Cord area was closely similar to Losseff et al., 1996 results and was reduced compared with controls (p<0.001).

Spinal Cord reduction was correlated with disability, studied by the EDSS. Furthermore, no correlation was found between DeMyelinating lesions and Spinal Cord area reduction.

This study confirms the interest of Spinal Cord area mesurement in MS. Spinal Cord Atrophy is a reliable marker for Axonal loss.

This method should be of particular interest for the follow-up of Axonal Loss in thepeutic trials especially in Primary/Progressive MS.

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