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Prognosis

Exclusive breastfeeding and the effect on postpartum multiple sclerosis relapses.

Hellwig K, Rockhoff M, Herbstritt S et al.

Ruhr-University Bochum, Bochum, Germany.

 JAMA Neurol 2015;72:1132–8.

Stefan Bittner’s review: A number of “natural” or environmental factors are known to be associated with disease activity in multiple sclerosis (MS). Since the first large prospective study of pregnancy in women with MS in 1998 by Confavreux et al., it has been broadly recognized that relapse rates decline during pregnancy and increase again during the first 3 months post partum to the pre-pregnancy relapse rate (N Engl J Med 1998;339:285–91). However, contradictory results from previous studies have so far not made a clear case for the influence of breastfeeding from delivery on MS relapses.

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