Variables at onset of multiple sclerosis (MS) as predictors of time to unemployment have been studied using multivariate survival (time-to-response) analyses. The study consisted of 79 patients with MS diagnosed in the two most northern counties of Norway between 1974-82. Diagnostic category, age at onset, sex, county, symptom groups, course of disease and occupation groups were identified as possible prognostic variables. Forty one patients (51%) were unemployed at last follow up. None of the 15 patients with probable or possible MS were unemployed due to MS. The multivariate analyses selected the nonremittent course or heavy physical work and age over 30 at onset as high risk factors associated with early unemployment.
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