An MRI scan of patients recently diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) may predict the rate of cerebral atrophy over the following two years.
Dutch researchers used MRI to monitor the number and volume of MS-related lesions, which can help monitor the evolution of the disease but does not show the patient's disability level.
The scans were performed shortly after diagnosis and again after two years in 89 MS patients, with an average age of 37.5.
The authors said: 'Patients who have acquired more brain tissue loss and more T2 lesions are prone to have a higher rate of subsequent brain atrophy.'
Archives of Neurology (2007) 64:190-194