Research Article| Volume 22, P70-76, May 2018

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Prevalence of and risk factors for cognitive impairment in patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis: Multi-center, controlled trial


      • Patients should be monitored in terms of development of cognitive impairment.
      • Cognitive assessment should be performed for early diagnosis.
      • Patients of advanced age, living alone, with low education, and with high disability score should be monitored more closely.
      • Turkey, a country between Europe and Asia has characteristics of both continents including cognitive impairment in MS.



      Cognitive impairment (CI) is a common problem in multiple sclerosis (MS), may occur either in early or late phase of the disease, and impairs quality of life.


      This study aimed to determine the prevalence of CI and related risk factors in relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) patients in Turkey.


      The present cross-sectional, multi-center, and nationally representative study included RRMS patients. Sociodemographic characteristics, cognitive functions and additional outcomes were compared between patients with and without CI.


      The analyses included 487 RRMS patients. According to the BRB-N battery results, CI prevalence was 53.7%. There was a negative significant correlation of BRB-N subtests with age, disease duration, and EDSS and MSNQ-patient rated scores. On the logistic regression analysis, increased age, living in village/rural area, high income level, and high EDSS score were significant increasing risk factors in the development of CI.


      This is the first national cognitive data obtained from MS in Turkey, which is a country between Europe and Asia and thus has characteristics of both continents. The similarity of the results of the present study obtained from Turkey to the Western-based data indicates that CI is universal in MS and the main factors affecting CI have not changed.


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