Table 1

Characteristics of the 32 patients studied more than 1 year after stopping NTZ

CharacteristicsPatients with relapseRelapse-free patientsp Value
Sex, F/M10/811/3ns
MS subtype, RR/SP15/311/3ns
Age, median (range) years40 (2555)45 (2757)ns
Age at onset, median (range) years25 (1245)31 (1850)ns
NTZ duration, median (range) months26 (1255)31 (1256)ns
Alternative treatment after NTZns
 Methylprednisolone† with/without immunomodulator108
Annualised relapse rate, mean±SDns
 Before NTZ2.2±1.31.5±0.9
 After NTZ1.8±0.8
EDSS score, mean±SDns
 Before NTZ4.5±1.75.5±1.7
 After NTZ4.7±1.95.7±2.2
Gadolinium-enhancing lesion(s), mean±SD
 Before NTZ2.2±3.72.4±3.0
 After NTZ17.2±18.20.3±0.6
  • *After stopping NTZ, interferon-β or glatiramer acetate was started within 1 month or immediately, respectively.

  • †1 month after NTZ interruption, a 1-g methylprednisolone pulse was given monthly for 6 months.

  • ‡The number of gadolinium-enhancing lesions before starting NTZ was comparable for the two groups. The number of gadolinium-enhancing lesions increased after NTZ interruption for patients with relapse (p=0.003) and decreased for relapse-free patients (p=0.03).

  • EDSS, Expanded Disability Status Scale; MS, multiple sclerosis; NTZ, natalizumab; RR, relapsing-remitting; SP, secondary progressive.