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Category Archives: multiple-sclerosis
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is the most common disabling neurological disease of young adults. It most often appears when people are between 20 to 40 years old. However, it can also affect children and older people.
The course of MS is unpredictable. A small number of those with MS will have a mild course with little to no disability, while another smaller group will have a steadily worsening disease that leads to increased disability over time. Most people with MS, however, will have short periods of symptoms followed by long stretches of relative relief, with partial or full recovery. There is no way to predict, at the beginning, how an individual persons disease will progress.
Researchers have spent decades trying to understand why some people get MS and others don't, and why some individuals with MS have symptoms that progress rapidly while others do not. How does the disease begin? Why is the course of MS so different from person to person? Is there anything we can do to prevent it? Can it be cured?
This brochure includes information about why MS develops, how it progresses, and what new therapies are being used to treat its symptoms and slow its progression. New treatments can reduce long-term disability for many people with MS. However, there are still no cures and no clear ways to prevent MS from developing.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a neuroinflammatory disease that affects myelin , a substance that makes up the membrane (called the myelin sheath) that wraps around nerve fibers (axons). Myelinated axons are commonly called white matter. Researchers have learned that MS also damages the nerve cell bodies, which are found in the brains gray matter, as well as the axons themselves in the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerve (the nerve that transmits visual information from the eye to the brain). As the disease progresses, the brains cortex shrinks (cortical atrophy).
The term multiple sclerosis refers to the distinctive areas of scar tissue (sclerosis or plaques) that are visible in the white matter of people who have MS. Plaques can be as small as a pinhead or as large as the size of a golf ball. Doctors can see these areas by examining the brain and spinal cord using a type of brain scan called magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
While MS sometimes causes severe disability, it is only rarely fatal and most people with MS have a normal life expectancy.
Plaques, or lesions, are the result of an inflammatory process in the brain that causes immune system cells to attack myelin. The myelin sheath helps to speed nerve impulses traveling within the nervous system. Axons are also damaged in MS, although not as extensively, or as early in the disease, as myelin.
Under normal circumstances, cells of the immune system travel in and out of the brain patrolling for infectious agents (viruses, for example) or unhealthy cells. This is called the "surveillance" function of the immune system.
Surveillance cells usually won't spring into action unless they recognize an infectious agent or unhealthy cells. When they do, they produce substances to stop the infectious agent. If they encounter unhealthy cells, they either kill them directly or clean out the dying area and produce substances that promote healing and repair among the cells that are left.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) facts Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that causes demyelination (disruption of the myelin that insulates and protects nerve cells) of spinal nerve and brain cells. Although the exact case is unknown, MS is considered to be an autoimmune disease. Risk factors for the disease include being between 15-45 years of age; women have about two to three times the risk for MS than men. MS symptoms and signs depend on where the nerves are demyelinated and may include visual changes, numbness, tingling or weakness (weakness may range from mild to severe), paralysis, vertigo, erectile dysfunction (ED, impotence) pregnancy problems, incontinence (or conversely, urinary retention), muscle spasticity, painful involuntary muscle contractions. There are four types of MS: relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS, the most common type), secondary-progressive MS (SPMS), primary-progressive MS (SPMS), and progressive-relapsing MS (PRMS). MS is diagnosed by a patient's history, physical exam, and tests such as MRI, lumbar puncture, and evoked potential testing (speed of nerve impulses); other tests may be done to rule out other diseases that may cause similar symptoms. MS treatment options include Most MS patients have a normal life expectancy; untreated patients may develop mobility dysfunction while patients with the severe progressive forms may develop complications like pneumonia. Ways to prevent getting MS have not been discovered. Research is ongoing into developing new medications, immune system modifications, and other ways to identify potential MS causes. What is the definition of multiple sclerosis (MS)?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that involves an immune-mediated process that results in an abnormal response in the body's immune system that damages central nervous system tissues; the immune system attacks myelin, the substance that surrounds and insulate nerves fibers causing demyelination that leads to nerve damage. Because the exact antigen or target of the immune mediated attack is not known, many experts prefer to label MS as "immune-mediated instead of an "autoimmune disease."
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease which causes demyelination of the brain and spinal cord nerve cells. When this occurs, axons (the parts of the nerve cells which conduct impulses to other cells), don't work as well. Myelin acts like insulation on electrical wires. As more areas or nerves are affected by this loss of myelin, patients develop symptoms because the ability of axons to conduct impulses is diminished or lost. The specific symptom that someone experiences is related to the area that has been affected. As demyelination takes place, areas of inflammation and subsequent injury can be identified; these areas of injury are called lesions or plaques and are readily apparent on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/15/2015
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) - Treatment Question: What treatment have you had for multiple sclerosis?
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) - Prognosis Question: What's the prognosis with your multiple sclerosis?
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) - Diagnosis Question: How was your multiple sclerosis diagnosed?
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) - Causes Question: Were you, a friend, or relative diagnosed with MS? What do you think the cause might be?
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) - Symptoms Question: The symptoms of multiple sclerosis can vary greatly from patient to patient. What were your symptoms at the onset of your disease?
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) - Type Question: What type of multiple sclerosis do you have? How do you cope with the symptoms and your condition?
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Managing Multiple Sclerosis Means Minding Many Medications Part 3 - Video
Managing Multiple Sclerosis Means Minding Many Medications
Chronic conditions like multiple sclerosis require constant monitoring by doctors and patients, As time goes on medication and treatment options may need to be changed. Tecfidera, one popular...
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Managing Multiple Sclerosis Means Minding Many Medications - Video