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  • Updated 10.03.2023
  • Released 02.11.2021
  • Expires For CME 10.03.2026

Management of multiple sclerosis in COVID-19 pandemic


In response to the uncertainties concerning the management of multiple sclerosis during the pandemic, we asked Senior Associate Editor Dr. Anthony Reder to answer some key questions regarding COVID-19 and multiple sclerosis.

Key points

• COVID-19 pandemic was and remains a serious health challenge for the general population and even more for fragile individuals like people with multiple sclerosis.

• Although the risk of severe infection is markedly reduced due to the prevalence of less aggressive variants, COVID-19 disease in people with multiple sclerosis could be more severe due to immunosuppressive therapies. However, real world data indicate that overall risk of COVID-19 infection and severity in these people is modestly increased, and the risk factors specifically related to with multiple sclerosis are disease duration, elevated disability, progressive disease phenotype, and the use of anti-CD20 therapies.

• Specific COVID-19 therapies (eg, anti-Sars-Cov2 monoclonal antibodies) may be employed in people with multiple sclerosis, if needed.

• Anti-Sars-Cov2 vaccines are safe and should be recommended to people with multiple sclerosis. Immunization schedules should be adapted according to the treatments for multiple sclerosis, and some therapy may be delayed or temporarily suspended to obtain effective immune responses to vaccines.

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