Maria K. Houtchens

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OBJECTIVES Recent studies have indicated that brain atrophy is more closely associated with cognitive impairment in multiple sclerosis (MS) than are conventional MRI lesion measures. Enlargement of the third ventricle shows a particularly strong correlation with cognitive impairment, suggesting clinical relevance of damage to surrounding structures, such as(More)
Cognitive dysfunction is common in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), and has been associated with MRI measures of lesion burden and atrophy. Little is known about the prevalence of cognitive impairment in patients with early MS. The associations between cognitive impairment and MRI measures of disease severity early in the disease course are also(More)
BACKGROUND/PURPOSE To assess correlation between brain lesions and clinical status with 1.5T and 3T magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). METHODS Brain MRI fluid-attenuated inversion-recovery (FLAIR) sequences were performed in 32 multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) score (mean±standard deviation) was 2±2.0 (range 0-8),(More)
MRI at 3 T has increased sensitivity in detecting overt multiple sclerosis (MS) brain lesions; a growing body of data suggests clinically relevant damage occurs in the normal-appearing white matter (NAWM). We tested a novel pulse sequence to determine whether 3 T MRI spin-spin relaxometry detected damage in NAWM of MS patients (n=13) vs. age-matched normal(More)
BACKGROUND Although cigarette smokers are at increased risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS), the effect of smoking on the progression of MS remains uncertain. OBJECTIVE To establish the relationship between cigarette smoking and progression of MS using clinical and magnetic resonance imaging outcomes DESIGN Cross-sectional survey and longitudinal(More)
OBJECTIVE In addition to the main multiple sclerosis (MS) major histocompatibility complex (MHC) risk allele (HLA DRB1*1501), investigations of the MHC have implicated several class I MHC loci (HLA A, HLA B, and HLA C) as potential independent MS susceptibility loci. Here, we evaluate the role of 3 putative protective alleles in MS: HLA A*02, HLA B*44, and(More)
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system affecting predominantly women of childbearing age; therefore, issues of conception, pregnancy, and delivery become of significant importance to patients and treating physicians. This article discusses the immunological and clinical effects of pregnancy on the course of MS,(More)
OBJECTIVE To determine the interrelationships between MRI-defined lesion and atrophy measures of spinal cord involvement and brain involvement and their relationships to disability in a small cohort of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). BACKGROUND Although it is known that cervical spinal cord atrophy correlates with disability in MS, it is unknown(More)
OBJECTIVE To examine the evidence guiding management of multiple sclerosis (MS) in reproductive-aged women. DATA SOURCES We conducted an electronic literature search using PubMed,, and other available resources. The following keywords were used: "multiple sclerosis" and "pregnancy." We manually searched the reference lists of identified(More)
Women with neuromyelitis optica, an acute inflammatory demyelinating condition of the central nervous system, have an unpredictable clinical course in pregnancy. Providing neuraxial anesthesia for these patients is controversial, although relapses may occur after exposure to either general or neuraxial anesthesia and are common. We report the successful(More)