Risk of Getting COVID-19 in People With Multiple Sclerosis


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 a new study (DOI: https://doi.org/10.1212/NXI.0000000000001141) was to assess risk factors of contracting SARS-CoV-2 infection in PwMS by using data collected in the Italian MS Register (IMSR).

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.