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J Neuroophthalmol. 2001 Dec;21(4):292-5.

The controlled high risk Avonex multiple sclerosis trial (CHAMPS Study).

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Department of Neurology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104, USA.

Erratum in

  • J Neuroophthalmol 2002 Mar;22(1):67.


The Controlled High Risk Avonex Multiple Sclerosis Study (CHAMPS) tested whether interferon beta la (Avonex) treatment would benefit patients who had experienced a first acute demyelinating event involving the optic nerve, brain stem/cerebellum, or spinal cord, and who displayed MRI brain signal abnormalities that have previously predicted a high likelihood of future MS-like events. The study randomized 383 patients into an Avonex-treated and a placebo-treated group; both groups received intravenous methylprednisolone 1 gm/d followed by prednisone 1 mg/kg for 11 days. The Avonex-treated group demonstrated a 44% reduction in the 3-year cumulative probability of developing clinically definite multiple sclerosis (rate ratio 0.56, 95% confidence interval 0.38 to 0.8; P = 0.002). At 18 months, treatment with Avonex was associated with a significant reduction of new T2 lesions, gadolinium enhanced lesions and T2 lesion volume. Among placebo-treated patients, 82% had developed a new subclinical MRI signal abnormality by the eighteenth month after study entry. Treatment benefit was observed irrespective of the qualifying event. The findings of this study support the efficacy of Avonex therapy in significantly reducing the 3-year likelihood of future neurologic events and worsening of the brain MRI in patients with a first acute CNS demyelinating event.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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