Increasing occurrence of multiple sclerosis in women correlates to hygiene level
Samodzielna Lecznica Centrum w Warszawie
Correspondence: Doc. dr n. med. Wojciech Cendrowski, ul. Balladyny 1 D/6, 02-553 Warszawa, tel.: +48 22 845 28 61, e-mail: chihahi@op.pl
Aktualn Neurol 2014, 14 (4), p. 245–249
DOI: 10.15557/AN.2014.0028
ABSTRACT

Introduction: The increasing incidence of multiple sclerosis, particularly among women in Europe and North America, has a multifactorial aetiology. Method: The aim of the current study was to ascertain the relation between the hygiene level and occurrence of multiple sclerosis in women in Poland. The study was based on a large cohort of 14,200 multiple sclerosis individuals (male – 6,106, female – 8,094) who died in the years 1981–2010 in Poland. The female to male ratio (the F:M ratio) in the multiple sclerosis group was calculated using the number of deaths per year. The rate of late mortality in infants (LMI) per 1,000 live births yearly was used as a marker of the hygiene level. A correlation analysis was carried out between the rate of LMI and the F:M ratio in the multiple sclerosis cohort in the years 1981–2010. Demographic data were obtained from the Central Statistical Office in Warsaw. Results: The F:M ratio in the multiple sclerosis group evidently increased (range 1.08–1.79) in the years 1981–2010, showing increasing occurrence of multiple sclerosis in women (p < 0.0001). A significant, strong and inverse correlation was found between the marker of the hygiene level (LMI rate) and the F:M ratio in the multiple sclerosis group over three decades: linear correlation coefficient by Pearson: r = –0.693, p < 0.0001. By contrast with this result, no correlation was established between the hygiene level marker and proportion of women to men in the general population on account of extremely low variance of the F:M ratio (0.000025). Conclusion: The improvement of the hygiene level showed association with the increasing occurrence of multiple sclerosis in women in the years 1981–2010. The higher the hygiene level was, the greater the occurrence of female multiple sclerosis in Poland.

Keywords: multiple sclerosis, sex ratio, hygiene level, Poland