Recommendations for observational studies of comorbidity in multiple sclerosis

Ruth Ann Marrie, Aaron Miller, Maria Pia Sormani, Alan Thompson, Emmanuelle Waubant, Maria Trojano, Paul O'Connor, Kirsten Fiest, Nadia Reider, Stephen Reingold, Jeffrey A. Cohen, Giancarlo Comi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Objective: To reach consensus about the most relevant comorbidities to study in multiple sclerosis (MS) with respect to incidence, prevalence, and effect on outcomes; review datasets that may support studies of comorbidity in MS; and identify MS outcomes that should be prioritized in such studies. Methods: We held an international workshop to meet these objectives, informed by a systematic review of the incidence and prevalence of comorbidity in MS, and an international survey regarding research priorities for comorbidity. Results: We recommend establishing age- and sex-specific incidence and prevalence estimates for 5 comorbidities (depression, anxiety, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and diabetes); evaluating the effect of 7 comorbidities (depression, anxiety, hypertension, diabetes, hyperlipidemia, chronic lung disease, and autoimmune diseases) on disability, quality of life, brain atrophy and other imaging parameters, health care utilization, employment, and mortality, including age, sex, race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and disease duration as potential confounders; harmonizing study designs across jurisdictions; and conducting such studies worldwide. Ultimately, clinical trials of treating comorbidity in MS are needed. Conclusion: Our recommendations will help address knowledge gaps regarding the incidence, prevalence, and effect of comorbidity on outcomes in MS.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1446 - 1453
Number of pages8
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - Apr 12 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


Dive into the research topics of 'Recommendations for observational studies of comorbidity in multiple sclerosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this