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Acta Neurol Scand. 1983 May;67(5):255-62.

The epidemiology of multiple sclerosis in Finland: increase of prevalence and stability of foci in high-risk areas.


Reliable data on the epidemiology of multiple sclerosis (MS) in Finland are available from 1964 and 1972. They show that the whole country is a high-risk area of MS with clustering in the western part. A reassessment of the prevalence data was carried out in the southern province of Uusimaa and in the western province of Vaasa, the prevalence day being January 1, 1979. The age-adjusted prevalence was 52.9 per 100,000 in Uusimaa and 92.9 per 100,000 in Vaasa, figures that were three times higher than those recorded for the same areas in 1964. The communities with the highest prevalence rates in the province of Vaasa were the same as those in the survey of 1972; some rates exceeded 200 per 100,000. The increase in the prevalence rates may be due to a better registration of MS cases, but it may also represent a true increase, a possibility that only can be answered by further incidence studies.

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