Steroid treatment for relapses in multiple sclerosis – the evidence urges shared decision-making

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Abstract

Objectives

Therapy of acute relapses in multiple sclerosis with corticosteroids (CC) remains uncertain with respect to route, dosage and effectiveness. This makes the treatment of relapses a clinical field where ‘shared decision-making (SDM)’ could be of advantage for the patients. A prerequisite for SDM is the provision of evidence-based information for the patients. The British General Medical Council (GMC) has published ethical guidelines on seeking patients' consent for medical interventions, formulating topics of information patients need in order to make an informed treatment decision.

Methods

Medical databases were searched for evidence on the treatment of acute relapses with CC.

Results

The available evidence on relapse treatment is ambiguous and weak. It does not provide enough evidence to sufficiently inform patients following the topics formulated by the GMC.

Conclusion

Good evidence is lacking, supporting the concept of SDM in the therapy of relapses.

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