Multiple Sclerosis (MS) - Prognosis

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What's the prognosis with your multiple sclerosis?

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What is the prognosis and life expectancy for multiple sclerosis?

Patients with multiple sclerosis are felt to have the same life expectancy of those without multiple sclerosis. However, for patients with severe, progressive forms of this disease, problems caused by disability may lead to complications such as pneumonia.

If patients are not treated, over 30% may develop pronounced problems with mobility. It is not yet known what the long-term outcome of patients who begin treatment at an early stage of their disease will be.

There are two extremes in multiple sclerosis. The first is a "benign" syndrome in which patients have numerous lesions identified on MRI imaging, but have few -- if any -- symptoms, even decades after their diagnosis. At the opposite end of the spectrum is a condition identified as the Marburg variant of multiple sclerosis, where rapidly progressive symptoms are seen and death may occur after a very short time.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: MeeMaw, 25-34 Female (Caregiver) Published: February 20

My 33 year old daughter is currently on Tysabri, a once-a-month infusion that takes a few hours at the multiple sclerosis clinic. She is doing well. She seems to have no side effects from this drug, a great improvement from previous medications.

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Comment from: familymushroom1, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 26

I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis over 20 years ago but have been symptomatic since I was 17. Last summer I entered the secondary progressive category of the disease. Over the last 20 years I have been on Rebif, Betaseron and Avonex but for the last 15 years have been on Copaxone (with the exception of the few months that I did chemotherapy in an attempt to shut down and restart my immune system, which didn't work). I have an incredible husband, doctors, and case workers but I struggle with depression and daily frustration with pain, mobility, etc. The Copaxone causes joint pain so I am looking for the next big thing.

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