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What are the risk factors for progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML)?

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About 1 person out of every 200,000 will get progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML). That works out to a total of about 4,000 people a year in the United States and Europe combined.

It happens most often to people who have AIDS, which attacks the immune system. However, people who have some types of cancer or take drugs that keep their body from rejecting a transplanted organ also have a higher risk.

People who have multiple sclerosis, which attacks the central nervous system, or other immune system problems, like rheumatoid arthritis or lupus, may be at risk as well. U.S. safety officials have said that PML may be a possible side effect of some drugs used to treat multiple sclerosis after a small number of people who used them got it.

SOURCES:

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke: "Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy."

National Organization for Rare Disorders: "Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy."

Fields, R.D. , November 2010. Science

National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Reviewed by Neil Lava on October 21, 2018

SOURCES:

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke: "Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy."

National Organization for Rare Disorders: "Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy."

Fields, R.D. , November 2010. Science

National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Reviewed by Neil Lava on October 21, 2018

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How do doctors diagnose progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML)?

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