Physical and mental health comorbidity is common in people with multiple sclerosis: nationally representative cross-sectional population database analysis

BMC Neurol. 2014 Jun 13;14:128. doi: 10.1186/1471-2377-14-128.

Abstract

Background: Comorbidity in Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is associated with worse health and higher mortality. This study aims to describe clinician recorded comorbidities in people with MS.

Methods: 39 comorbidities in 3826 people with MS aged ≥25 years were compared against 1,268,859 controls. Results were analysed by age, gender, and socioeconomic status, with unadjusted and adjusted Odds Ratios (ORs) calculated using logistic regression.

Results: People with MS were more likely to have one (OR 2.44; 95% CI 2.26-2.64), two (OR 1.49; 95% CI 1.38-1.62), three (OR 1.86; 95% CI 1.69-2.04), four or more (OR 1.61; 95% CI 1.47-1.77) non-MS chronic conditions than controls, and greater mental health comorbidity (OR 2.94; 95% CI 2.75-3.14), which increased as the number of physical comorbidities rose. Cardiovascular conditions, including atrial fibrillation (OR 0.49; 95% CI 0.36-0.67), chronic kidney disease (OR 0.51; 95% CI 0.40-0.65), heart failure (OR 0.62; 95% CI 0.45-0.85), coronary heart disease (OR 0.64; 95% CI 0.52-0.71), and hypertension (OR 0.65; 95% CI 0.59-0.72) were significantly less common in people with MS.

Conclusion: People with MS have excess multiple chronic conditions, with associated increased mental health comorbidity. The low recorded cardiovascular comorbidity warrants further investigation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Comorbidity
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Databases, Factual
  • Female
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health / statistics & numerical data*
  • Middle Aged
  • Multiple Sclerosis / complications*
  • Multiple Sclerosis / epidemiology*
  • Multiple Sclerosis / psychology
  • Population
  • Scotland / epidemiology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Young Adult