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Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm ; 9(2)2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1643219


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Several studies have assessed risk factors associated with the severity of COVID-19 outcomes in people with multiple sclerosis (PwMS). The potential role of disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) and demographic and clinical factors on the risk of acquiring SARS-CoV-2 infection has not been evaluated so far. The objective of this study was to assess risk factors of contracting SARS-CoV-2 infection in PwMS by using data collected in the Italian MS Register (IMSR). METHODS: A case-control (1:2) study was set up. Cases included PwMS with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, and controls included PwMS without a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19. Both groups were propensity score-matched by the date of COVID-19 diagnosis, the date of last visit, and the region of residence. No healthy controls were included in this study. COVID-19 risk was estimated by multivariable logistic regression models including demographic and clinical covariates. The impact of DMTs was assessed in 3 independent logistic regression models including one of the following covariates: last administered DMT, previous DMT sequences, or the place where the last treatment was administered. RESULTS: A total of 779 PwMS with confirmed COVID-19 (cases) were matched to 1,558 PwMS without COVID-19 (controls). In all 3 models, comorbidities, female sex, and a younger age were significantly associated (p < 0.02) with a higher risk of contracting COVID-19. Patients receiving natalizumab as last DMT (OR [95% CI]: 2.38 [1.66-3.42], p < 0.0001) and those who underwent an escalation treatment strategy (1.57 [1.16-2.13], p = 0.003) were at significantly higher COVID-19 risk. Moreover, PwMS receiving their last DMT requiring hospital access (1.65 [1.34-2.04], p < 0.0001) showed a significant higher risk than those taking self-administered DMTs at home. DISCUSSION: This case-control study embedded in the IMSR showed that PwMS at higher COVID-19 risk are younger, more frequently female individuals, and with comorbidities. Long-lasting escalation approach and last therapies that expose patients to the hospital environment seem to significantly increase the risk of SARS-CoV2 infection in PwMS. CLASSIFICATION OF EVIDENCE: This study provides Class III evidence that among patients with MS, younger age, being female individuals, having more comorbidities, receiving natalizumab, undergoing an escalating treatment strategy, or receiving treatment at a hospital were associated with being infected with COVID-19. Among patients with MS who were infected with COVID-19, a severe course was associated with increasing age and having a progressive form of MS, whereas not being on treatment or receiving an interferon beta agent was protective.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Immunosuppressive Agents/therapeutic use , Multiple Sclerosis/epidemiology , Adult , Age Factors , Case-Control Studies , Dimethyl Fumarate/therapeutic use , Female , Fingolimod Hydrochloride/therapeutic use , Glatiramer Acetate/therapeutic use , Humans , Interferon-beta/therapeutic use , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Multiple Sclerosis/drug therapy , Multiple Sclerosis, Chronic Progressive/drug therapy , Multiple Sclerosis, Chronic Progressive/epidemiology , Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting/drug therapy , Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting/epidemiology , Natalizumab/therapeutic use , Odds Ratio , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index , Sex Factors , Time Factors
Mult Scler Relat Disord ; 58: 103415, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1525907


BACKGROUND: Patients with neuroimmunological conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS) often receive disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) or immunosuppressants which may reduce the response to vaccines. BNT162b2 (Pfizer-BioNTech) is the first COVID-19 vaccine authorized in Italy. Its clinical efficacy and serological response were not evaluated in MS patients receiving DMTs or immunosuppressants. This early multicenter study evaluated serological response to BNT162b2 and safety in these patients. METHODS: From February 2021 we enrolled consecutive MS patients, treated with at least one DMT and all healthcare workers (HCWs), having received or being scheduled to receive the first dose of BNT162b2. Blood samples were collected after the second vaccine dose and analyzed to quantitatively detect the presence of anti-Spike antibodies. Serological response was compared to the one from a control population of HCWs, with neither neuroimmunological conditions nor receiving immunosuppressants. Patients receiving treatments associated with a possible reduced response (Under-scrutiny treatment group) were also compared to those undergoing other treatments. Anti-Spike levels were described as median and interquartile range (IQR). Comparisons were performed with Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney test. Solicited and unsolicited adverse events (AEs) were collected. RESULTS: 39 MS patients and a control population of 273 HCWs were included. One patient, under treatment with ocrelizumab, did not respond to BNT162b2, while all the remaining patients and all controls developed a serological response to the vaccine. Median anti-Spike levels were similar between patients (1471.0 BAU/ml; IQR 779.7 to 2357.0) and controls (1479.0 BAU/ml; IQR 813.1 to 2528.0) (p = 0.53). Patients included in the Under-scrutiny treatments group showed reduced anti-Spike levels (156.4 BAU/ml; IQR 33.4 to 559.1) compared to those receiving other treatments (1582.4 BAU/ml; IQR 1296.5 to 2219.0) (p = 0.001). Solicited AEs were all mild to moderate in severity, generally reported in the first days after vaccination, and resolved in the following days. Two MS patients reported a clinical relapse after the second vaccine dose. CONCLUSION: BNT162b2 induced a serological response in MS patients treated with DMTs similar to controls not receiving DMTs or immunosuppressants. Some treatments were associated with reduced levels of anti-Spike antibodies in patients. These observations have relevant implications for treated patients receiving BNT162b2 and the community.

COVID-19 , Multiple Sclerosis , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Case-Control Studies , Humans , Immunoglobulin G , Multiple Sclerosis/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2
Neurology ; 95(7): e910-e920, 2020 08 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1115264


OBJECTIVE: To report clinical and laboratory characteristics, treatment, and clinical outcomes of patients admitted for neurologic diseases with and without coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). METHODS: In this retrospective, single-center cohort study, we included all adult inpatients with confirmed COVID-19 admitted to a neuro-COVID unit beginning February 21, 2020, who had been discharged or died by April 5, 2020. Demographic, clinical, treatment, and laboratory data were extracted from medical records and compared (false discovery rate corrected) to those of neurologic patients without COVID-19 admitted in the same period. RESULTS: One hundred seventy-three patients were included in this study, of whom 56 were positive and 117 were negative for COVID-19. Patients with COVID-19 were older (77.0 years, interquartile range [IQR] 67.0-83.8 years vs 70.1 years, IQR 52.9-78.6 years, p = 0.006), had a different distribution regarding admission diagnoses, including cerebrovascular disorders (n = 43, 76.8% vs n = 68, 58.1%), and had a higher quick Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (qSOFA) score on admission (0.9, IQR 0.7-1.1 vs 0.5, IQR 0.4-0.6, p = 0.006). In-hospital mortality rates (n = 21, 37.5% vs n = 5, 4.3%, p < 0.001) and incident delirium (n = 15, 26.8% vs n = 9, 7.7%, p = 0.003) were significantly higher in the COVID-19 group. Patients with COVID-19 and without COVID with stroke had similar baseline characteristics, but patients with COVID-19 had higher modified Rankin Scale scores at discharge (5.0, IQR 2.0-6.0 vs 2.0, IQR 1.0-3.0, p < 0.001), with a significantly lower number of patients with a good outcome (n = 11, 25.6% vs n = 48, 70.6%, p < 0.001). In patients with COVID-19, multivariable regressions showed increasing odds of in-hospital death associated with higher qSOFA scores (odds ratio [OR] 4.47, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.21-16.5, p = 0.025), lower platelet count (OR 0.98, 95% CI 0.97-0.99, p = 0.005), and higher lactate dehydrogenase (OR 1.01, 95% CI 1.00-1.03, p = 0.009) on admission. CONCLUSIONS: Patients with COVID-19 admitted with neurologic disease, including stroke, have a significantly higher in-hospital mortality and incident delirium and higher disability than patients without COVID-19.

Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Inpatients/statistics & numerical data , Nervous System Diseases/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , COVID-19 , Case-Control Studies , Comorbidity , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Female , Hospital Mortality , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Nervous System Diseases/diagnosis , Nervous System Diseases/mortality , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index
J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry ; 92(2): 218-220, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-873577