Characteristics of a Series of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Patients Observed at the National MS Beta-Interferon Committee in Jordan Over a One-YearPeriod (August 2009-August 2010)

Yacoub G Bahou, Mohammad Jaber, Talin Al-Nimri, Ahmad Ababneh


Objective: To study the characteristics of multiple sclerosis (MS) in a series of Jordanian patients observed at the Beta-Interferon Committee and compare them with those from other Arab/Middle Eastern or Western countries.

Methods: Data from 101 patients with MS attending the Jordanian National MS Beta-Interferon Committee over a one-year period, from August 1, 2009 to August 1, 2010, were collected.

Results: Mean age at MS onset was 27.1 years, with 70 females and 31 males (F/M ratio=2.26:1) with a peak incidence in the 3rd decade. Ten patients, all female, had early onset(below 18 years of age). The mean disease duration was 3.3 years, with almost 1/2 of the patients having a short duration below one year. The most common clinical manifestation was limb weakness with pyramidal signs related to myelopathy followed by optic neuritis and brainstem symptoms. The most common MS pattern was relapsing-remitting(RR) in 66 patients with a relatively high number of clinically isolated syndromes (CIS) in 28 patients. There were 34 new cases in 2009 and 23 new cases over the study year(August 2009-August 2010), showing a trend toward an increase in incidence compared to previous years. All 101 patients were born and/or live in the center/North of Jordan and none in the South, with 69 patients in the capital Amman. Beta-Interferon was used in 81 patients.

Conclusions: The general characteristics of MS in Jordan were similar to most Arab countries and Western reports. There is a possible north/south gradient of MS in Jordan and a trend toward an increase in incidence in recent years.


Multiple sclerosis, Beta-Interferon, Jordan

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