Serial MRI in multiple sclerosis: A prospective pilot study of lesion load, whole brain volume and thalamic atrophy

I. Taylor, H. Butzkueven, L. Litewka, L. R. MacGregor, C. Szoeke, M. Cook, P. Mitchell, T. J. Kilpatrick, Niall Tubridy

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Using serial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), we investigated the relationship between diffuse cerebral atrophy, T1 and T2 lesion volumes, mean thalamic volumes and clinical progression in patients with established multiple sclerosis (MS). Eleven patients were included in this prospective serial study. Cerebral volumes, T1 hypointense lesion volumes, and T2 hyperintense lesion volumes at baseline and at up to 3 years follow-up were assessed on MRI brain scans. As a putative measure of cerebral atrophy mean thalamic volumes were also obtained. The outcome measures were the MRI parameters and disability on Kurtzke's expanded disability status scale (EDSS). Of the 11 patients 6 worsened clinically as measured by an increase of 0.5 or more on the EDSS. Cerebral atrophy occurred in 91% of patients and was independent of changes in lesion volumes and was not associated with disease progression as determined by the EDSS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-158
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Neuroscience
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2004


  • Atrophy
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Thalamic volume

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