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MRI of the Entire Spinal Cord-Worth the While or Waste of Time? A Retrospective Study of 74 Patients with Multiple Sclerosis

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Spinal cord lesions are included in the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis (MS), yet spinal cord MRI is not mandatory for diagnosis according to the latest revisions of the McDonald Criteria. We investigated the distribution of spinal cord lesions in MS patients and examined how it influences the fulfillment of the 2017 McDonald Criteria. Seventy-four patients with relapsing-remitting MS were examined with brain and entire spinal cord MRI. Sixty-five patients received contrast. The number and anatomical location of MS lesions were assessed along with the Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS). A Chi-square test, Fischer's exact test, and one-sided McNemar's test were used to test distributions. MS lesions were distributed throughout the spinal cord. Diagnosis of dissemination in space (DIS) was increased from 58/74 (78.4%) to 67/74 (90.5%) when adding cervical spinal cord MRI to brain MRI alone (p = 0.004). Diagnosis of dissemination in time (DIT) was not significantly increased when adding entire spinal cord MRI to brain MRI alone (p = 0.04). There was no association between the number of spinal cord lesions and the EDSS score (p = 0.71). MS lesions are present throughout the spinal cord, and spinal cord MRI may play an important role in the diagnosis and follow-up of MS patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1424
JournalDiagnostics
Volume11
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)1424
ISSN2075-4418
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Aug 2021

ID: 68816276