Does obesity exacerbate brain lesion volume and atrophy in patients with multiple sclerosis?

Rachel Galioto, Ophira Berenholz, Zhini Wang, Devon S Conway, Sarah M Planchon, Stephen M Rao
Multiple Sclerosis and related Disorders 2020 September 10, 46: 102502

BACKGROUND: Obesity is common among patients with multiple sclerosis (pwMS) and has been shown to exacerbate central inflammation, a key factor in disease progression. The purpose of this cross-sectional study is to examine the possible relationships between obesity, as measured by body mass index (BMI), and MS-related brain changes in atrophy and lesion volume, as measured from MRI, in a large, representative sample of pwMS.

METHODS: BMI and MRI data, along with demographic and disease variables, were acquired from the Multiple Sclerosis Partners Advancing Technology and Health Solutions (MS PATHS) registry. Unadjusted and adjusted partial correlations, controlling for gender, race, age, education level, MS phenotype, disability and disease duration, examined the associations between BMI and MRI outcomes, which included brain parenchymal fraction, white matter fraction, gray matter fraction, thalamic volume, and T2 lesion volume.

RESULTS: The sample consisted of 3,046 pwMS. Unadjusted and adjusted BMI-MRI correlations accounted for between 0.4% and 2.0% of shared variance (R2 ). When considering the relationship between MRI outcomes and BMI category (normal weight, overweight, obese), multiple regression analyses continued to show minimal association, with BMI category accounting for no more than 1.5% of shared variance.

CONCLUSIONS: No clinically meaningful associations were found between BMI and MRI outcomes in this large, representative sample of MS patients, regardless of demographics and disease variables. These unexpected negative results will require replication with a longitudinal design using more precise measures of obesity.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"