Radiologically isolated syndrome in children: Clinical and radiologic outcomes

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Abstract

Objective:

To describe clinical and radiologic outcomes of children with incidental findings on neuroimaging suggestive of CNS demyelination (termed “radiologically isolated syndrome” or RIS).

Methods:

Clinical and radiologic data were obtained from a historical cohort of children with no symptoms of demyelinating disease who had MRI scans that met the 2010 MRI criteria for dissemination in space for MS.

Results:

We identified 38 children (27 girls and 11 boys) with RIS now being prospectively followed at 16 sites in 6 countries. The mean follow-up time was 4.8 ± 5.3 years. The most common reason for initial neuroimaging was headache (20/38, 53%). A first clinical event consistent with CNS demyelination occurred in 16/38 children (42%; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 27%–60%) in a median of 2.0 years (interquartile range [IQR] 1.0–4.3 years). Radiologic evolution developed in 23/38 children (61%; 95% CI: 44%–76%) in a median of 1.1 years (IQR 0.5–1.9 years). The presence of ≥2 unique oligoclonal bands in CSF (hazard ratio [HR] 10.9, 95% CI: 1.4–86.2, p = 0.02) and spinal cord lesions on MRI (HR 7.8, 95% CI: 1.4–43.6, p = 0.02) were associated with an increased risk of a first clinical event after adjustment for age and sex.

Conclusions:

We describe the clinical characteristics and outcomes of children with incidental MRI findings highly suggestive of CNS demyelination. Children with RIS had a substantial risk of subsequent clinical symptoms and/or radiologic evolution. The presence of oligoclonal bands in CSF and spinal cord lesions on MRI were associated with an increased risk of a first clinical event.

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