Multiple Sclerosis, Causes, Tests, Diagnosis & Treatment

Posted: August 20, 2015 at 5:51 pm

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disorder in which the bodys immune system attacks the protective sheath (myelin) that insulates your nerves and helps mediate the transmission of nerve impulses. As a result, the electrical impulses that travel along the nerves decelerates, which slows down the communication between your brain and rest of the body. Furthermore, nerve damage also occurs. Symptoms of multiple sclerosis may vary with the extent of nerve damage and the type of nerves affected.

As multiple sclerosis progresses, a person may begin to lose the ability to see, walk, write or speak. According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, multiple sclerosis is the leading cause (with the exception of physical trauma) of neurological disability beginning in early to mid-adulthood (most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50), with 200 people being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis every week.

Overall, multiple sclerosis affects an estimated 400,000 Americans and is significantly more common amongst women. Currently there is no cure for multiple sclerosis. However, treatments can help treat attacks, modify the course of the disease and treat symptoms.

Symptoms of multiple sclerosis vary between individuals and can change as the disease progresses. Episodes can last for days, weeks, or months. These episodes alternate with periods of reduced or no symptoms (remissions). Multiple sclerosis symptoms include:

The exact cause of multiple sclerosis is currently unknown. It is generally accepted that multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disorder. Scientists believe that a host of factors may contribute to the onset of multiple sclerosis including, exposure to environmental toxins, genetics, and childhood exposure to certain viruses or bacteria.

The following factors may increase your risk of developing multiple sclerosis:

In order to make a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis, your doctor must definitively conclude all of the following:

There is currently no cure for multiple sclerosis. Treatment regimens typically focus on managing symptoms and attacks of multiple sclerosis.

Multiple sclerosis treatment regimens include:

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Multiple Sclerosis, Causes, Tests, Diagnosis & Treatment

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