Fatigue, cognitive functioning and depression in paediatric MS

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Epub ahead of printGoretti et al. Fatigue and its relationships with cognitive functioning and depression in paediatric multiple sclerosis. Mult Scler. 2011 Aug 15.

Background: There is limited information on fatigue and its clinical and psychosocial correlates in children and adolescent MS’ers.

Objective: To assess the relationships between fatigue, cognitive functioning and depression in paediatric MS.

Results: In total, 57 patients with RRMS were compared with 70 healthy controls.

Percentages of fatigued patients ranged from 9% to 14% according to self-reports, and from 23% to 39% according to parent reports.

Fatigue was significantly related with higher scores on the Children’s Depression Inventory.

Higher levels of self-reported cognitive fatigue were associated with impaired performance on a problem-solving test, whereas higher levels of parent-reported cognitive fatigue were associated with impairment on tests of verbal learning, processing speed, complex attention and verbal comprehension.

Conclusions: Our data show that fatigue can affect a sizeable proportion of paediatric MS’ers, and confirm the association between fatigue and depressive symptoms in MS.

“Interesting that fatigue is less common in paediatric MS; in adults ~80% of MS’ers will complain of fatigue. I wonder if the perception of fatigue is learnt?”


“Fatigue, cognitive impairment and depression are also a massive problem in paediatric MS.”

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Prof G

Professor of Neurology, Barts & The London. MS & Preventive Neurology thinker, blogger, runner, vegetable gardener, husband, father, cook and wine & food lover.

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