A to Z of MS
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A to Z of MS Poser criteria
These were criteria for the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis developed by a team led by Dr Charles Poser and published in 1983. The Poser criteria established the basis for diagnosing the condition until they were superseded by the McDonald criteria, originally published in 2001 and subsequently updated.
Poser defined different levels of certainty in the diagnosis of MS.
Clinically definite MS: requires two attacks (of more than 24 hours duration, and more than one month apart) and clinical evidence of lesions in two places within the central nervous system.
Laboratory supported definite MS: includes evidence from a lumbar puncture showing oligoclonal banding.
Clinically probable MS: the above combination of clinical and paraclincial evidence but no oligoclonal bands.
Laboratory supported probable MS: oligoclonal banding without clinical or paraclinical evidence of lesions.
Some older clinical trials refer to these criteria and people who have been living with MS for many years may have been diagnosed using them.
Poser CM, et al.
New diagnostic criteria for multiple sclerosis: guidelines for research protocols.
Annals of Neurology 1983;13(3):227-231.