Most children and adolescents with pediatric-onset multiple sclerosis (POMS), especially those treated intravenously with a disease-modifying therapy (DMT), achieve no evidence of disease activity within two years of diagnosis, according to a real-life study from the U.S.
Patients whose DMTs are infused into a vein (intravenous treatment) are more likely to reach disease activity-free status than are those on other DMTs or no DMT, suggesting this treatment route be a favored option for the pediatric MS population.
The research, “Assessing No Evidence of Disease Activity in Pediatric Onset Multiple Sclerosis,” was presented by Jenny Feng, MD, with the Cleveland Clinic’s Mellen Center for MS Treatment and Research, at the MSVirtual2020 held Sept. 11–13. It marked the 8th joint meeting of the American (ACTRIMS) and European (ECTRIMS) Committees for Treatment and Research in MS.
Around 10,000 children worldwide are estimated to have POMS, accounting for 5%–10% of all multiple sclerosis (MS) cases. These children are usually treated with therapies approved for adults with MS, but only one DMT — oral Gilenya (fingolimod, by Novartis) — is approved in the U.S. for MS patients starting at age 10.
Treatment decisions in POMS patients are challenging, due to limited clinical trial efficacy data on available MS therapies, and a lack of clear optimal treatment goals for this patient population.
No evidence of disease activity, or NEDA — a status defined by the absence of relapses, new or enlarging brain lesions (as assessed with MRI), and confirmed disability progression (as evaluated by the expanded disability status scale) — has been proposed as a possible outcome measure and treatment goal in MS.
However, NEDA rates and the factors that may influence its achievement in POMS patients are still unknown.
Researchers at Cleveland Clinic and the University of Utah set out to determine the proportion of POMS patients achieving NEDA, and predictors of NEDA status in a real-world setting.
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