Demographic and clinical features of neuromyelitis optica: A review

L. Pandit, N. Asgari, M. Apiwattanakul, J. Palace, F. Paul, M. I. Leite, I. Kleiter, T. Chitnis, Raffaele Iorio, Jens Würfel, Friedemann Paul, Daniëlle Van Pelt, Hintzen Rogier, Thomas Tedder, Albert Saiz, Pablo Villoslada, Michael Levy, Lekha Pandit, Eric Klawiter, Brian WeinshenkerDean Wingerchuk, Ho Jin Kim, Silvia Tenembaum, Jacqueline Palace, Maria Isabel Leite, Metha Apiwattanakul, Simon Broadley, Naraporn Prayoonwiwat, Ingo Kleiter, Kerstin Hellwig, May Han, Brenda Banwell, Katja Van Herle, Anu Jacob, Craig Hooper, Douglas Kazutoshi Sato, Ichiro Nakashima, Kazuo Fujihara, Denis Bichuetti, Orhan Aktas, Jerome De Seze, Michael Yeaman, Emmanuelle Waubant, Scott Zamvil, Jeffrey Bennett, Terry Smith, Marco Lana-Peixoto, Nasrin Asgari, Benjamin Greenberg, Olaf Stuve

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

243 Scopus citations


The comparative clinical and demographic features of neuromyelitis optica (NMO) are not well known. In this review we analyzed peer-reviewed publications for incidence and prevalence, clinical phenotypes, and demographic features of NMO. Population-based studies from Europe, South East and Southern Asia, the Caribbean, and Cuba suggest that the incidence and prevalence of NMO ranges from 0.05-0.4 and 0.52-4.4 per 100,000, respectively. Mean age at onset (32.6-45.7) and median time to first relapse (8-12 months) was similar. Most studies reported an excess of disease in women and a relapsing course, particularly in anti-aquaporin 4 antibody (anti AQP4-IgG)-positive patients. Ethnicity may have a bearing on disease phenotype and clinical outcome. Despite limitations inherent to the review process, themes noted in clinical and demographic features of NMO among different populations promote a more global understanding of NMO and strategies to address it.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)845-853
Number of pages9
JournalMultiple Sclerosis Journal
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jun 6 2015


  • NMO
  • demographics
  • epidemiology
  • incidence
  • prevalence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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