Background: An increasing incidence of MS in the city of Catania was reported during 1975–2004, with a higher incidence along the south-eastern flank of the Mt.Etna. We evaluated the incidence of MS in the entire province of Catania during 2005–2015 and the spatial distribution of MS-cases using a cluster analysis. Methods: Patients were considered as incident MS-cases if they fulfilled the revised McDonald criteria for MS during 2005–2015 and were residents in the province of Catania at the time of disease onset. Cluster analysis was performed using both LISA and Kulldorff's spatial scan statistic. Residence address at disease onset was considered for each case. Communalities were assessed considering the centroid of their inhabited area. Results: A total of 973 MS-cases were identified. Mean annual incidence risk was 8.2/100,000 person-years (95%CI 7.7–8.7), significantly higher among women (10.5/100,000 versus 5.7/100,000). LISA identified a spatial aggregation of MS-cases in the eastern side of the province of Catania and Kulldorff's statistics confirmed the existence of a statistically significant spatial cluster in this area (SIR 1.23,95%CI 1.08–1.23, p-value 0.04). Conclusions: Our study confirms a high incidence of MS in the province of Catania and the presence of a spatial cluster along the eastern side of the province. This area is considered the most exposed to volcanogenic ashes due to the prevailing westerly to north-westerly trade winds. Even if such distribution could be related with a greater exposure to volcanogenic metals, further studies are needed to explore possible alternative hypotheses.
|Titolo:||Incidence of multiple sclerosis in the province of Catania. A geo-epidemiological study|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2020|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|