Clinical characteristics of multiple sclerosis and associated optic neuritis in Korean children

Joon Seo Hwang, Seong-Joon Kim, Young Suk Yu, Hum Chung
Journal of AAPOS: the Official Publication of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus 2007, 11 (6): 559-63

PURPOSE: To study the clinical characteristics of multiple sclerosis and associated optic neuritis in Korean children.

METHOD: A retrospective analysis was performed on 10 patients with an onset of multiple sclerosis before age 16. Information on sex, age of onset, clinical course, laboratory findings, and clinical characteristics of optic neuritis was obtained.

RESULT: The mean age at presentation was 7.31 +/- 2.99 years, and the mean duration of observation was 36.2 +/- 26.1 months. No female predilection (50%) was observed. The disease presented as relapsing-remitting type multiple sclerosis in all patients and transited to secondary progressive type in two cases (20%). No oligoclonal bands were found in any patient. Optic neuritis occurred in eight patients (80%); five (62.5%) of these had optic neuritis at the first multiple sclerosis attack, with all five manifesting bilateral simultaneous optic neuritis. Visual acuity recovered to > or =20/40 in 8 of 15 eyes (53.3%), but in 2 eyes (13.3%) visual acuity remained at < or =20/200. In the patients with optic neuritis, the patients who showed optic neuritis at initial presentation had a worse visual prognosis (p = 0.030, Mann-Whitney U-test).

CONCLUSIONS: In Korean children with multiple sclerosis, age of onset was younger than reported in other countries, and there was no female predominance. The prognosis for good visual acuity was worse in patients who initially presented with optic neuritis.

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