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Spending time indoors during childhood ups risk of developing multiple sclerosis

13 Jan 2019

Low levels of sun exposure throughout childhood appears to be associated with an increased risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS) in adulthood, a study reports. Notably, the risk is greatest in those who spend most time indoors and use sun protection frequently in their limited time outdoors.

The study included 2,251 MS patients and 4,028 non-MS controls enrolled in the Environmental Risk Factors in MS (EnvIMS) study. The participants provided data on their sun exposure behaviours for 5-year age intervals from birth, with the study focusing on the first three age intervals (≤15 years).

Researchers compared two conceptual life course epidemiology models that can be used to explain disease aetiology: the critical period and accumulation models. The critical period model suggests the existence of a time period during which an individual is susceptible to exposures that determine disease risk, whereas the accumulation model suggests that longer duration of exposure time heightens the risk of disease in individuals irrespective of when exposure occurs.

Based on the results, the accumulation model emerged as the best model, which demonstrated that the lowest vs highest sun exposure at all three age intervals yielded a nearly 50-percent increased risk of MS (risk ratio [RR], 1.47; 95 percent CI, 1.24–1.74).

On latent class analysis, the highest risk of MS was observed in the group of individuals with low sun exposure during both summer and winter and high sun protection use than in the group with high sun exposure and low sun protection use (RR, 1.76; 1.27–2.46).

The findings underscore the importance of promoting balanced safe sun exposure practices tailored to specific populations in order to reduce disease burden, especially in countries and cultures where children spend a lot of time indoors, researchers said.

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Most Read Articles
5 days ago
In patients with type 2 diabetes, obesity may be protective against vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy, a recent Korea study has shown.
Roshini Claire Anthony, 4 days ago

Men with metastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancer (mHSPC) who receive testosterone suppression therapy may have a better survival outcome with the addition of enzalutamide over other non-steroidal anti-androgen (NSAA) therapies, according to the phase III ENZAMET* trial.

07 Jun 2019
Low-dose aspirin therapy does not confer significant benefits to elderly patients with hypertension, but treatment appears to increase the risk of haemorrhagic events, suggest a Japan study.
4 days ago
The use of opioids may have limited long-term efficacy in the management of chronic noncancer pain, reports a new study.