Voxelwise analysis of conventional magnetic resonance imaging to predict future disability in early relapsing–remitting multiple sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis Journal, 04/16/2012

The assessment of lesion location at the first stage of multiple sclerosis may be of value to predict future clinical disability.


  • This study included 38 patients with a CIS.
  • At inclusion, 10 out of 38 patients fulfilled the 2010 revised McDonald’s criteria for the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis.
  • Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) evaluation was performed at baseline, year 1 and year 5, and cognitive evaluation at baseline and year 5.
  • T2-weighted MRI was performed at baseline and year 1.
  • The authors used voxelwise analysis to analyse the predictive value of lesions location for subsequent disability.


  • Using the global approach, no correlation was found between MRI and clinical data.
  • The occurrence or growth of new lesions in the brainstem was correlated with EDSS changes over the 5 years of follow-up.
  • The occurrence or growth of new lesions in cerebellum, thalami, corpus callosum and frontal lobes over 1 year was correlated with cognitive impairment at 5 years.

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