Objective Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disease with different clinical courses and a tendency to worsening. The relapsing-remitting MS presents acute onset and relapses of neurological symptoms, followed by their remission. This form can convert to secondary progressive MS (SPMS) with irreversible neurological worsening and disability. The identification of signs, symptoms, markers of progression, and strategies to manage MS patients is mandatory to allow early identification of those at higher risk of conversion to SPMS, for prompt intervention to cope with the progression of the disease.Methods A panel of Italian experts from Southern Italy have reviewed the current knowledge on MS and its management and identified the crucial tools for SPMS recognition.Results More effective communication between patients and clinicians should be established, with the support of digital tools. Moreover, the improvement in the clinical use of biomarkers for progression (cellular structures and tissue organization, such as neurofilaments and chitinase 3-like 1, axonal and neurons density) and of instrumental analyses for recognition of whole-brain atrophy, chronic active lesions, spinal cord lesions and atrophy, and the improvement the combination of the Expanded Disability Status Scale and the evaluation of cognitive dysfunction are discussed.Conclusion Given the availability of a pharmacological option, adequate education both for patients, regarding the evolution of the disease and the specific treatment, and for professionals, to allow more effective and sensitive communication and the best use of diagnostic and management tools, could represent a strategy to improve patient management and their quality of life.

Unmet needs and gaps in the identification of secondary progression in multiple sclerosis: a Southern Italy healthcare professionals' perspective

Lus, Giacomo;Bonavita, Simona;Gallo, Antonio;
2022

Abstract

Objective Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disease with different clinical courses and a tendency to worsening. The relapsing-remitting MS presents acute onset and relapses of neurological symptoms, followed by their remission. This form can convert to secondary progressive MS (SPMS) with irreversible neurological worsening and disability. The identification of signs, symptoms, markers of progression, and strategies to manage MS patients is mandatory to allow early identification of those at higher risk of conversion to SPMS, for prompt intervention to cope with the progression of the disease.Methods A panel of Italian experts from Southern Italy have reviewed the current knowledge on MS and its management and identified the crucial tools for SPMS recognition.Results More effective communication between patients and clinicians should be established, with the support of digital tools. Moreover, the improvement in the clinical use of biomarkers for progression (cellular structures and tissue organization, such as neurofilaments and chitinase 3-like 1, axonal and neurons density) and of instrumental analyses for recognition of whole-brain atrophy, chronic active lesions, spinal cord lesions and atrophy, and the improvement the combination of the Expanded Disability Status Scale and the evaluation of cognitive dysfunction are discussed.Conclusion Given the availability of a pharmacological option, adequate education both for patients, regarding the evolution of the disease and the specific treatment, and for professionals, to allow more effective and sensitive communication and the best use of diagnostic and management tools, could represent a strategy to improve patient management and their quality of life.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11591/481931
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