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Incidental MRI lesions suggestive of multiple sclerosis in asymptomatic patients in Karachi, Pakistan.

Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry

Retrospective Studies, Young Adult, physiology, Female, Evoked Potentials, Visual, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Multiple Sclerosis, diagnosis, epidemiology, pathology, Pakistan, Adolescent, Adult

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      The objective of this study was to identify asymptomatic patients with brain MRI lesions suggestive of multiple sclerosis (MS) in a low-prevalence area of Pakistan. Brain MRIs for 864 patients were reviewed at the Aga Khan University (Karachi, Pakistan) during an 8-month period of 2006 and 2007 to identify patients with lesions suggestive of MS. The lesions were characterised based on modified Barkhof criteria. Six (two females) (0.7%) of 864 patients fulfilled brain MRI criteria suggestive of MS. The mean number of MRI lesions (total lesions on T2) were 9 (range 5-14). Although Pakistan is considered a low-prevalence area for MS, 0.7% of brain MRI scans in patients without clinical MS symptoms showed lesions fulfilling brain MRI criteria of MS.

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