ANF News Express

AANEM Foundation News Express

Monica Alcantara, MD, PhD, Receives 2022 Best Abstract Award

The AANEM’s Best Abstract Award is given to the first and presenting author of the best abstract submitted to the AANEM Annual Meeting.

Title: Outcomes of COVID-19 Infection and Vaccination in Individuals With Myasthenia Gravis: A Population-Based Study

Alcantara’s team assessed rates of COVID-19 infection, hospitalization, and death in adults with myasthenia gravis (MG) and matched controls in a retrospective, population-based, matched-cohort study. They found that adults with MG who contracted COVID-19 had approximately twice the risk of hospitalization, ICU admission, and death compared to controls. Vaccine uptake was high, with negligible risk of severe MG exacerbations after vaccination.

“One of the main challenges of treating patients with MG is the frequent requirement for immunosuppression, which may increase the risk of serious infections, including COVID-19,” explained Alcantara. “Our main interest when designing this study was to investigate with population-based data the outcomes of COVID-19 infection in people with MG and to provide high-quality data that may impact treatment decisions.”

Alcantara said this research could have an impact on future treatments and policy. “The results of our study may support the prioritization of people with MG for vaccination and consideration of new therapies. Furthermore, it may influence future public health policies and preparedness efforts for redirecting resources in times of higher demand, such as pandemic situations.”

Alcantara will present an abstract poster at the upcoming AANEM Annual Meeting in Nashville, TN. She is looking forward to the opportunities to connect with people from all over the world that may share common interests, and to receive feedback about her work. “I am very grateful for the recognition of our efforts with this award,” she added.

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