Multiple sclerosis care in Pakistan; analysis of data presented at first PAKTRIMS conference 

  • Zara Shah Aga khan university, Karachi
  • Haris Majid Pakistan institute of Medical Sciences, Islamabad 
  • Sadia Nishat Sind institute of urology and transplantation, Karachi 
  • Sumera Rafat Umer Dow University of health sciences, Karachi 
  • Sundus Mehtab Shafee Dow University of health sciences, Karachi 
  • Ahmed Wali Bolan Medical complex, Quetta 
  • Naila Shahbaz Dow University of health sciences, Karachi 
  • Mughis Sheerani Sind institute of urology and transplantation, Karachi
  • Mohammad Wasay Aga khan university, Karachi
Keywords: multiple sclerosis, Pakistan, care, treatment, conference

Abstract

Novel data on Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in Pakistan from leading institutes in the country was presented at the first Pakistan Treatment in Multiple Sclerosis (PAKTRIMS) Conference, organized by the section of neurology, department of medicine, Aga Khan University, Karachi on Saturday, December 18, 2021. Pakistan has been considered to have a low prevalence of MS; however, recent research reveals that it is not as uncommon as previously believed to be in the country. The true prevalence and incidence of MS in the country is unknown because of dearth of research. Data of MS patients enrolled in various private and public institutes in Pakistan highlights the current treatment offered in Pakistan for MS patients with steroids as the mainstay treatment and disease modifying drugs (DMD) mainly including azathioprine, ocrelizumab and rituximab. Available data featuring disease progression indicates a successful response to the treatment offered to patients with improved expanded disability status scale (EDSS) and radiological findings. The conference was a steppingstone towards future research in MS in Pakistan as it highlighted what is furthered required to have a better picture of the disease in the country. Available data majorly outlines demographic characteristics and disease characteristics, however, there is a need for research to fill in the gap for data in reporting MS diagnosis, treatment, and disease outcome to develop a better healthcare system geared towards MS patients in a low- and middle-income Country (LMIC)

Published
2022-10-18
Section
Special Communication