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COVID-19 in multiple sclerosis and neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder patients in Latin America

  • Alonso, Ricardo1, 2
  • Silva, Berenice2
  • Garcea, Orlando2
  • Diaz, Patricio E. Correa3
  • dos Passos, Giordani Rodrigues4
  • Navarro, Deyanira A. Ramirez5
  • Valle, Luis A. Garcia6
  • Salinas, Luis C. Rodriguez7
  • Negrotto, Laura8
  • Luetic, Geraldine9
  • Tkachuk, Verónica A.10
  • Míguez, Jimena11
  • de Bedoya, Fernando Hamuy Diaz12, 13
  • Goiry, Lorna Galleguillos14
  • Sánchez, Nicia E. Ramírez15
  • Burgos, Marcos16
  • Steinberg, Judith17
  • Balbuena, Maria E.10
  • Alvarez, Priscilla Monterrey18
  • López, Pablo A.19
  • And 34 more
  • 1 Centro Universitario de Esclerosis Múltiple. Hospital Ramos Mejía, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 2 Servicio de Neurología, Hospital Universitario Sanatorio Guemes, Argentina
  • 3 Hospital Carlos Andrade Maín, Ecuador
  • 4 Hospital São Lucas - Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
  • 5 Hospital Docente Padre Billini, República Dominicana
  • 6 Hospital Militar Escuela Managua, Nicaragua
  • 7 Instituto Hondureño De Seguridad Social, Honduras
  • 8 FLENI, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 9 Instituto de Neurociencias de Rosario, Argentina
  • 10 Hospital de Clinicas Jose de San Martin, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 11 Hospital Italiano de Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 12 Departamento de Neurologia, Hospital IMT, Paraguay
  • 13 Departamento de Neurologia de Diagnóstico Codas Thompson, Paraguay
  • 14 Clínica Alemana de Santiago, Chile
  • 15 Hospital Dr. Mario C. Rivas de San Pedro Sula, Honduras
  • 16 Hospital San Bernardo, Salta, Argentina
  • 17 Hospital Británico de Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 18 Hospital San Rafael, Costa Rica
  • 19 Hospital Alemán de Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 20 Private practice, Venezuela
  • 21 MD. Complejo Hospitalario CSS, Panamá
  • 22 Hospital Santo Tomas, Panamá
  • 23 Policlinica Maracaibo, Venezuela
  • 24 Hospital J. M. Ramos Mejia
  • 25 Diabaid, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 26 Centro de esclerosis múltiple de Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 27 INECO Neurociencias Oroño – Rosario, Argentina
  • 28 Hospital Naval - Hospital de Clínicas, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 29 Hospital José Carrasco Arteaga, Ecuador
  • 30 Hospital Horacio Oduber, Aruba
  • 31 Hospital Universitario Austral, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 32 Fundación Favaloro, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 33 Universidad Catolica de Chile, Chile
  • 34 Sanatorio Británico de Rosario, Argentina
  • 35 Clinica Reina Fabiola, Córdoba, Argentina
  • 36 Instituto Lennox, Córdoba, Argentina
  • 37 Hosp.Patrocinio P.Ruiz,San Cristóbal, Venezuela
  • 38 Hospital Regional Universitario José Ma Cabral y Báez
  • 39 Sanatorio Allende, Córdoba, Argentina
  • 40 Hospital de Agudos P. Piñero, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 41 Hospital Universitario Nacional de Colombia
  • 42 Hospital Español de Rosario, Argentina
  • 43 & Data Science Institute, Hasselt University, Belgium
  • 44 MS International Federation, London, UK
  • 45 Infectious Diseases Unit Sanatorio Güemes, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • 46 Servicio de Neurología, Hospital Universitario de CEMIC, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Published Article
Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders
Elsevier B.V.
Publication Date
Mar 07, 2021
DOI: 10.1016/j.msard.2021.102886
PMID: 33744758
PMCID: PMC7937038
PubMed Central
  • Original Article


Background There is no data regarding COVID-19 in Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) patients in Latin America. Objective The objective of this study was to describe the clinical characteristics and outcomes of patients included in RELACOEM, a LATAM registry of MS and NMOSD patients infected with COVID-19. Methods RELACOEM is a longitudinal, strictly observational registry of MS and NMOSD patients who suffer COVID-19 and Dengue in LATAM. Inclusion criteria to the registry were either: (1) a biologically confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis based on a positive result of a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test on a nasopharyngeal swab; or (2) COVID-19–typical symptoms (triad of cough, fever, and asthenia) in an epidemic zone of COVID-19. Descriptive statistics were performed on demographic and clinical variables. The cohort was later stratified for MS and NMOSD and univariate and multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to identify variables associated with hospitalizations/intensive critical units (ICU) admission. Results 145 patients were included in the registry from 15 countries and 51 treating physicians. A total of 129 (89%) were MS patients and 16 (11%) NMOSD. 81.4% patients had confirmed COVID-19 and 18.6% were suspected cases. 23 (15.8%) patients were hospitalized, 9 (6.2%) required ICU and 5 (3.4 %) died due to COVID-19. In MS patients, greater age (OR 1.17, 95% CI 1.05 – 1.25) and disease duration (OR 1.39, 95%CI 1.14-1.69) were associated with hospitalization/ICU. In NMOSD patients, a greater age (54.3 vs. 36 years, p=<0.001), increased EDSS (5.5 vs 2.9, p=0.0012) and disease duration (18.5 vs. 10.3 years, p=0.001) were significantly associated with hospitalization/ICU. Conclusion we found that in MS patients, age and disease duration was associated with hospitalization and ICU admission requirement, while age, disease duration and EDSS was associated in NMOSD.

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