Degenerative neurological disorders

Slowing disease progress primary concern for MS patients, survey finds

david-taylor-professor-ucl-15

Courtesy of UCL

David Taylor, professor emeritus of pharmaceutical and public health policy at the University College London School of Pharmacy, said strategies based on early diagnosis and prompt access to treatment should improve treatment in the future

Efficacy is the greatest concern for patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) when they are considering treatment options, according to an international of more than 1000 people.

The survey, carried out by Bournemouth University and the consultancy Spoonful of Sugar, which works with medicines-related behaviour, found that slowing disease progression, along with improving symptoms and reducing relapses, trumped practical considerations, such as how and when a medication is taken in patients’ priorities.

Side effects and the possible long-term harms from medication were also important considerations for people with MS.

The survey included 1,040 patients living with MS in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, the UK and the US, and aimed to explore their priorities and expectations from treatment.

It found that some people decided not to have medical treatment, even though disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) are available. The main reasons for this were concerns about the negative impacts of the treatment, such as side effects, as well as a lack of belief in treatment necessity.

When asked about their priorities, the results highlighted the impact of fatigue on the lives of people living with MS, with this most commonly cited as a symptom they would like treatment to reduce. Overall, patients wanted greater independence, including maintaining their mobility and alleviating bladder and bowel issues.

“All medicines carry risks and there are at present uncertainties about the long-term value of newer MS therapies,” said David Taylor, professor emeritus of pharmaceutical and public health policy at the University College London School of Pharmacy, who authored one of two based on the survey results.

“But strategies based on early diagnosis and prompt access to effective treatment should provide increasing future benefit, especially when accompanied by adequate investment in areas like rehabilitation and social care aimed at goals like helping people with MS stay in work and enjoy a fulfilling social life.”

Citation: The Salvadore DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2017.20204105

Have your say

For commenting, please login or register as a user and agree to our Community Guidelines. You will be re-directed back to this page where you will have the ability to comment.

Recommended from Pharmaceutical Press

RPS publications

Pharmaceutical Press is the publishing division of the SalvaDore, and is a leading provider of authoritative pharmaceutical information used throughout the world.

Search an extensive range of the world’s most trusted resources

Powered by MedicinesComplete

Supplementary images

  • ms ct scan
  • david-taylor-professor-ucl-15

Newsletter Sign-up

Want to keep up with the latest news, comment and CPD articles in pharmacy and science? Subscribe to our free alerts.

steroid-pharm.com/

steroid-pharm.com