Month of Birth effect

Akhtar S, Alroughani R, Al-Shammari A, Al-Abkal J, Ayad Y.
Month of birth and risk of multiple sclerosis in Kuwait: A population-based registry study. Mult Scler. 2014 Aug 4. pii: 1352458514541578. [Epub ahead of print]

BACKGROUND: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a complex immune-mediated disorder of central nervous system with undefined aetiology. This study examined the month of birth effect on subsequent MS risk later in the life in Kuwait.
METHODS: The month of birth of MS patients enrolled in Kuwait MS Registry between 1 January 1950-30 April 2013 was compared with the month of births in the general population during the comparable period.
RESULTS: Data on 1035 confirmed MS patients were collected, of which 65.2% were female and 77.1% were Kuwaiti. The overall risk of MS births (per 105 births in general population) was 28.5 (95% confidence interval (CI): 26.8-30.3). There was a significant (p=0.004) peak in the number of MS births during December. During this month, the risk of MS birth was 1.3 times the risk of MS birth in the trough month after adjusting for the effects of gender and nationality (adjusted relative risk=1.3; 95% CI: 1.1-1.6).
CONCLUSIONS: This study showed a statistically significant month of birth effect on MS risk with 13% excess MS births during December in Kuwait. 

The month of Birth effect is evidence used to support the vitamin D concept. But is the month of birth factor or artefact. In this study in Kuwait it appeared to be a peak in december, which is rather different from the peak in May and through in November in Northern Europe. 

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  • In the Kuwait summer people prefer to be in air-conditioned comfort. Winter weather is better for spending time outdoors

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