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ACTRIMS 2021 | Racial disparities in brain volumetric relationships with disability in MS

Global and regional brain volume MRI measurements are predictive of disease severity in multiple sclerosis (MS). Disparities in brain MRI volumetric measures between Hispanic and Caucasian patients with MS have not previously been characterized. To address this knowledge gap, a study was conducted that analyzed brain MRI scans from over 90 matched pairs of Caucasian and Hispanic patients with MS. Carlos Pérez, MD, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX, shares the findings from this study. The results showed that specific volume measures were differentially associated with Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) scores in the two cohorts. It was also demonstrated that in both racial groups, thalamic volume was the best predictor of sustained disability worsening. Dr Pérez highlights that based on these findings, there is a need to consider racial disparities when looking at volumetric relationships with disability. This interview took place during the ACTRIMS Forum 2021.