Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 24  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 186-191

Clinical features, gender differences, disease course, and outcome in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder

1 Department of Neurology, All India institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
2 Department of Biostatistics, All India institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
3 Department of Ophthalmology, All India institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
4 Department of Neuroimaging and Interventional Neuroradiology, All India institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Rohit Bhatia
Room No. 602, CN Centre. All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi-110029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aian.AIAN_334_20

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Introduction: Neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) is an astrocytopathy with a predilection for the optic nerve, spinal cord, and brainstem. In this ambispective study, we evaluate clinical characteristics, responses to therapy, and disability outcomes in patients with NMOSD. Methods: Patients diagnosed as NMOSD and following up for at least 1 year at a tertiary care center in India were recruited. Patient data were collected ambispectively from January 2012 until December 2018. Results: A total of 106 patients (29M/77F) with NMOSD were evaluated. The mean age of onset was 29 (±11.6) years. About 77 patients (72.64%) were positive for the AQP4 antibody. Age of onset was higher for those presenting with an opticospinal syndrome (34.2 years) as compared to either isolated longitudinally extensive transverse myelitis (LETM) (30 years) or optic neuritis (ON) (25.3 years). The most common syndrome at onset was LETM in 57 patients (53.77%) followed by ON in 31 patients (29.24%). Azathioprine was the most common immunotherapy (83.96%) prescribed followed by rituximab (7.54%) and mycophenolate mofetil (1.88%). There was a significant decrease in the number of relapses post-azathioprine (P < 0.001). Out of 67 patients with ON, 21 (31.34%) had complete recovery while 17 (25.37%) patients had a severe deficit at a 3-month follow-up. Out of 92 patients with a motor deficit, 49 (53.26%) patients had a partial motor deficit at a 6-month follow-up. The severe visual deficit at baseline and female gender predicted poor visual and motor recovery, respectively. Conclusion: This is the largest descriptive study on patients with NMOSD from India. Relapse rates were similar irrespective of the clinical presentation, age, gender, and disease course. Treatment with immunosuppressive treatment significantly affected the disease course.

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