News of World Medicine

Mononucleosis may increase the risk of multiple sclerosis

According to a recent study, infectious mononucleosis is an acute condition of Epstein-Barr infection, and it is associated with an increased risk of multiple sclerosis (MS). Scientists from the University of Örebro in Sweden have reported that about 2.5 million people who were born between 1958 and 1994, 5867 (0.24%) were diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) at the age of 20 or older.

The analysis has revealed that infectious mononucleosis is associated with a 2.87-fold increase of the risk of MS, but the risk increased up to 3.19 for those people who experienced mononucleosis at a young age. In this regard the most dangerous period is the age from 11 to 15 years. The connection between viral infection and neurological disease has levelled off by the age of 25. The scientists argue that a more severe infection experienced in childhood increases the risk that the Epstein-Barr virus can provoke severe inflammation in the brain and cause the immune system to attack myelin.

 

Source: Medscape