Dubbed as microbleeds, a new research has recently claimed that these leaky blood vessels in the brain are associated with an increased risk of physical and cognitive disability in patients inflicted with multiple sclerosis (MS). Cerebral microbleeds have previously been more common with age and are a known risk factor for dementia. However, experts have noted that they can alszo be associated with traumatic brain injury, stroke, Alzheimer's disease, and Parkinson's disease.
Microbleeds In Multiple Sclerosis
In one of his statements reported by Knowridge Science Report, Robert Zivadinov, a professor of neurology at the University at Buffalo has explained that he and his colleagues have allegedly decided to study cerebral microbleeds and MS because they saw a significant overlap in the risk factors for each condition. It was found that the study has included 445 patients with MS; 45 of them are noted for having a clinically isolated syndrome - the first MS episode a patient experiences; while 51 patients were diagnosed with other neurological diseases; and 177 of them were considered as healthy controls. Consequently, an assistant professor of neurology and senior author of the paper, Ferdinand Schweser, said that 20 percent of MS patients over the age of 50 have cerebral microbleeds as compared to the 7 percent of healthy controls.
Furthermore, according to reports revealed by Futurity, the experts have explained that the more cerebral microbleeds a patient had, the more severe were their physical and cognitive outcomes would be. Additionally, it was also found that MS patients who had more cerebral microbleeds had more physical disability after adjusting for age, hypertension, and whole-brain volume. Zivadinov claims that the study findings are significant because it suggests that cerebral microbleeds are associated with increased physical disability in MS patients, which is basically independent from these additional risk factors for cerebral microbleeds.
Meanwhile, as of the press time, Zivadinov adds that significant research is being conducted on ways to combat cerebral microbleeds. The experts have also highly emphasized that currently, prevention of cardiovascular risk factors was seen as the best way to prevent their formation since there are no currently available target therapies. It was found that a team of researchers from Wayne State University has also collaborated on the project, which was apparently supported in part by the Buffalo Neuroimaging Analysis Center and the Jacquemin Family Foundation.