Multiple sclerosis or MS is an autoimmune disorder in which brain and spinal cord nerve cells become demyelinated. This damage results in symptoms that may include numbness, weakness, vertigo, paralysis, and involuntary muscle contractions. Different forms of MS can follow variable courses from relatively benign to life-threatening. MS is treated with disease-modifying therapies. Some MS symptoms can be treated with medications. Read more: Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Article
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What Is Multiple Sclerosis? MS Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis
MS is an autoimmune disease that attacks the nerves of the central nervous system. Learn about multiple sclerosis (MS) causes,...
Pain Management: Surprising Causes of Pain
What's causing your pain? Learn the common causes of lower back pain, as well as pain in the knee, stomach, kidney, shoulder,...
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Quiz: Test Your Medical IQ
Multiple Sclerosis is a debilitating neurological condition. Take the MS Quiz to test your knowledge of the causes, symptoms,...
Eye Problems & Conditions Quiz
What do you know about your eyes? Take this quick quiz to learn about a range of eye diseases and conditions.
Pain Quiz: Test Your IQ of Pain
Is pain all in the brain? Take the Pain Quiz to learn everything you've ever wanted to know about the unpleasant sensation we...
Celebrities With Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
Learn about celebrities, such as Montel Williams and Jack Osbourne, who are living with multiple sclerosis.
Multiple Sclerosis: Signs of Multiple Sclerosis Relapse
Signs of an MS relapse can vary in type and intensity. This WebMD slideshow lists some of the more common relapse symptoms.
Picture of Nerve Fibers and Myelin Attack in MS
In multiple sclerosis, an agent such as a virus or foreign antigen, in theory, may alter or interact with the immune system so...
Picture of Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms
Symptoms of multiple sclerosis may be single or multiple and may range from mild to severe in intensity and short to long in...
Multiple Sclerosis: Making an MS Friendly Home
Adults with multiple sclerosis may be at risk for injuries, hazards, and falling at home. Some simple home modifications can...
Related Disease Conditions
Muscle spasms are involuntary muscle contractions that come on suddenly and are usually quite painful. Dehydration, doing strenuous exercise in a hot environment, prolonged muscle use, and certain diseases of the nervous system may cause muscle spasms. Symptoms and signs of a muscle spasm include an acute onset of pain and a possible bulge seen or felt beneath the skin where the muscle is located. Gently stretching the muscle usually resolves a muscle spasm.
The definition of a genetic disease is a disorder or condition caused by abnormalities in a person's genome. Some types of genetic inheritance include single inheritance, including cystic fibrosis, sickle cell anemia, Marfan syndrome, and hemochromatosis. Other types of genetic diseases include multifactorial inheritance. Still other types of genetic diseases include chromosome abnormalities (for example, Turner syndrome, and Klinefelter syndrome), and mitochondrial inheritance (for example, epilepsy and dementia).
Bladder Infection (Cystitis)
Bladder infection is an infection of the bladder, usually caused by bacteria or, rarely, by Candida. Certain people, including females, the elderly, men with enlarged prostates, and those with chronic medical conditions are at increased risk for bladder infection. Bladder infections are treated with antibiotics, but cranberry products and adequate hydration may help prevent bladder infections.
What Can Trigger Vertigo?
Vertigo is the sensation of spinning or rocking, even when someone is at rest. Vertigo may be caused by a problem in the brain or spinal cord or a problem within in the inner ear. Head injuries, certain medications, and female gender are associated with a higher risk of vertigo. Medical history, a physical exam, and sometimes an MRI or CT scan are required to diagnose vertigo. The treatment of vertigo may include medication, special exercises to reposition loose crystals in the inner ear, or exercises designed to help the patient re-establish a sense of equilibrium. Controlling risk factors for stroke (blood pressure, weight, cholesterol, and blood glucose) may decrease the risk of developing vertigo.
Dizziness is a symptom that often applies to a variety of sensations including lightheadedness and vertigo. Causes of dizziness include low blood pressure, heart problems, anemia, dehydration, and other medical conditions. Treatment of dizziness depends on the cause.
Vitamin D Deficiency
Vitamin D deficiency has been linked with rickets, cancer, cardiovascular disease, severe asthma in children and cognitive impairment in older adults. Causes include not ingesting enough of the vitamin over time, having limited exposure to sunlight, having dark skin, and obesity. Symptoms include bone pain and muscle weakness. Treatment for vitamin D deficiency involves obtaining more vitamin D through supplements, diet, or exposure to sunlight.
Constipation is defined medically as fewer than three stools per week and severe constipation as less than one stool per week. Constipation usually is caused by the slow movement of stool through the colon. There are many causes of constipation including medications, poor bowel habits, low-fiber diets, laxative abuse, and hormonal disorders, and diseases primarily of other parts of the body that also affect the colon.
Sexual Problems in Men
Male sexual dysfunction can be caused by physical or psychological problems. Common sexual problems in men include erectile dysfunction (impotence or ED), premature ejaculation, and loss of libido. Treatment for sexual dysfunction in men may involve medication, hormone therapy, psychological therapy, and the use of mechanical aids.
Fatigue and Exhaustion
Fatigue can be described in various ways. Sometimes fatigue is described as feeling a lack of energy and motivation (both mental and physical). The causes of fatigue are generally related to a variety of conditions or diseases, for example, anemia, mono, medications, sleep problems, cancer, anxiety, heart disease, and drug abuse.Treatment of fatigue is generally directed toward the condition or disease that is causing the fatigue.
MS (Multiple Sclerosis) vs. ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis)
ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Lou Gehrig's disease) and MS (multiple sclerosis) are both diseases of the nervous system (neurodegenerative). ALS is a disease in which the nerve cells in the body are attacked by the immune system, although it's not considered an autoimmune disease by some scientists. MS is an autoimmune disease in which the insulated covering of the nerves (myelin sheath) in the CNS (central nervous system) degenerate, or deteriorate. Scientists don't know the exact cause of either problem. However, they have discovered that mutations in the gene that produces the SOD1 enzyme were associated with some cases of familial ALS. Scientists also theorize that multiple sclerosis may be caused by infection or vitamin D deficiency. ALS occurs between 50-70 years of age (the average age of occurrence ALS is 55), and mostly affects men. While MS occurs between 20-60 years of age, and mostly affects women. About 30,000 people in the US have ALS, and an average of 5,000 new diagnoses per year (that's about 15 new cases per week). Worldwide, MS affects more than 2.3 million people, with about 10,000 new cases diagnosed each year (that's about 200 new diagnoses per week).Some of the signs and symptoms of both diseases include muscle weakness, muscle spasms, problems walking, fatigue, slurred speech, and problems swallowing. ALS signs and symptoms that are different from MS include problems holding the head upright, clumsiness, muscle cramps and twitches, problems holding objects, and uncontrollable periods of laughing or crying. MS signs and symptoms that are different from ALS include vision problems, vertigo and balance problems, sexual problems, memory problems, depression, mood swings, and digestive problems. There is no cure for either disease, however the prognosis and life expectancy are different. Multiple sclerosis is not a fatal condition, while ALS progresses rapidly and leads to death.
Depression is an illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts and affects the way a person eats and sleeps, the way one feels about oneself, and the way one thinks about things. The principal types of depression are major depression, dysthymia, and bipolar disease (also called manic-depressive disease).
Erectile Dysfunction (ED, Impotence)
Erectile dysfunction (ED, impotence) is the failure to achieve or maintain an erection. There are many potential underlying causes of erectile dysfunction, including stress and emotional problems, brain dysfunction, problems with blood supply to the penis, and structural problems with the penis.
Pain management and treatment can be simple or complex, according to its cause. There are two basic types of pain, nociceptive pain and neuropathic pain. Some causes of neuropathic pain include: complex regional pain syndrome, interstitial cystitis, and irritable bowel syndrome. There are a variety of methods to treat chronic pain, which are dependant on the type of pain experienced.
Hydronephrosis describes swelling of the kidney resulting from the inability of urine to drain from the kidney into the bladder. This may be a normal variant or it may be due to an underlying illness or medical condition. Symptoms of acute hydronephrosis may include intense flank or back pain radiating to the groin, nausea, vomiting, bloody urine, sweating, and colicky pain, which may cause the person to writhe or roll around or pace in pain.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Symptoms and Treatments
Multiple sclerosis (MS) symptoms vary from person to person and can last for days to months without periods of remission. Symptoms of MS include sexual problems and problems with the bowel, bladder, eyes, muscles, speech, swallowing, brain, and nervous system. The early symptoms and signs of multiple sclerosis usually start between ages 20-40. MS in children, teens, and those over age 40 is rare. Treatment options for multiple sclerosis vary depending on the type and severity of symptoms. Medications may be prescribed to manage MS symptoms.
Double vision (diplopia) is a symptom that my indicate Graves' disease, myasthenia gravis, stroke, multiple sclerosis, Guillain-Barre syndrome, diabetes, cataracts, aneurysm, brain tumor, or migraine. Symptoms and signs include eye pain, droopy eyelids, nausea, headache, and a cross-eyed appearance. Treatment of double vision depends upon the underlying cause.
Medical Marijuana (Medical Cannabis)
Medical marijuana (medical cannabis) is a medicine that is plant based. There are two species of medical marijuana; 1) Cannabis sativa, and 2) Cannabis indica. Medical marijuana is used to treat pain, nausea, anxiety, MS, insomnia, seizures, and muscle spasms. Medical cannabis is legal in a variety of states in the US. A card or licence is required to purchase medical marijuana in states where it is legal; however, medical cannabis is against Federal law. Medical marijuana comes in a variety of products, for example, gummy bears and other candy, muffins, cookies, drinks, salves, ointments, creams, oils, and wax.
Swallowing Problems (Dysphagia)
Dysphagia or difficulty in swallowing, swallowing problems. Dysphagia is due to problems in nerve or muscle control. It is common, for example, after a stroke. Dysphagia compromises nutrition and hydration and may lead to aspiration pneumonia and dehydration.
Uveitis is inflammation of the eye. Symptoms include blurred vision, eye pain, eye redness, photophobia, and floaters. Treatment may involve prescription eyedrops, antibiotics, and wearing dark glasses.
Neuropathic pain is a chronic condition that leads to ongoing pain symptoms. Patients can be predisposed to developing neuropathic pain who have conditions such as diabetes, cancer, stroke, HIV, vitamin deficiencies, shingles, and multiple sclerosis. Patient history and nerve testing are used to diagnose neuropathic pain. Antidepressants, antiseizure medications, and other types of medications are used to treat neuropathic pain. Many people with neuropathic pain are able to attain some level of relief.
Pain that originates in the face is referred to as trigeminal neuralgia. This pain may be caused by: an injury, an infection in the face, a nerve disorder, or it can occur for no known reason. Trigeminal neuralgia can be treated with antiseizure medications. Some antidepressant drugs also have significant pain relieving effects.
Overactive Bladder (OAB)
Overactive bladder is a sudden involuntary contraction of the muscle wall of the bladder causing urinary urgency (an immediate unstoppable need to urinate). Overactive bladder is is a form of urinary incontinence. Treatment options may include Kegel exercises, biofeedback, vaginal weight training, pelvic floor electrical stimulation, behavioral therapy, and medications.
Is Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Contagious?
Multiple sclerosis, or MS, is a degenerative disease of the covering around the nerves in the central nervous system (CNS). Researchers and doctors don't know the exact cause, but many theorize that it may be due to environmental triggers, an autoimmune disease, and viruses (infections). Symptoms and signs of MS include vision changes, paralysis, vertigo, heat intolerance, slurred speech, sexual dysfunction, and urinary incontinence (the inability to urinate). There's no vaccine or cure for MS, but the progression and symptoms of the disease can be treated.
Optic neuritis is inflammation of the optic nerve, the structure that connects the eye to the brain. The precise cause of optic neuritis is unknown, but it is thought to be a type of autoimmune disorder. Optic neuritis most commonly develops due to an autoimmune disorder that may be triggered by a viral infection.
Bowel Incontinence (Fecal Incontinence)
Bowel or fecal incontinence refers to the loss of voluntary control of stool, or bowel movements. The condition can include partial incontinence, in which a person loses only a small amount of liquid waste, to complete incontinence, in which the entire bowel movement cannot be controlled. Diet changes and elimination of certain medications can help patients to regain bowel control. Treatment involves a combination of medication, biofeedback, and exercise.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Early Warning Signs and Types
Multiple sclerosis (MS) can be thought of as an immune-mediated inflammatory process involving different areas of the central nervous system (CNS) at various points in time. Early warning signs and symptoms of MS in children, teens, and adults are similar; however, children and teens with pediatric also may have seizures and a complete lack of energy. Adults with MS do not have these signs and symptoms. Other signs and symptoms of MS include inflammation of the optic nerve (optic neuritis), changes in vision, Wiping or having tissues around the eye and moving the eye may be painful, and double vision. There are four types of MS, relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), secondary progressive MS (SPMS), primary progressive MS (PPMS), and progressive relapsing MD (PRMS).
What Neurological Disorders Cause Loss of Bladder Control?
Loss of bladder control is urinary incontinence. Severity ranges from occasionally leaking urine while straining, coughing or sneezing to having a frequent sudden urge to urinate. The causes of neurologic urinary incontinence include multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, stroke, brain tumor, spinal injury and heavy metal poisoning.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Pregnancy
Multiple sclerosis or MS is a central nervous system disease in which the immune system attacks the myelin sheath (the protective coating around nerves). Symptoms of MS include pain, sexual problems, fatigue, numbness and tingling, emotional changes, and depression.Women who are pregnant and have multiple sclerosis may have more difficulty carrying a pregnancy. Multiple sclerosis does not affect ability to conceive, and does not seem to affect fertility. MS symptoms during pregnancy may stay the same or get better; however, they may worsen after giving birth. Pregnancy decreases the number of relapses, but flares increase in the first 3-6 months after delivery. Pregnant women with MS may carrying a pregnancy more difficult to tell when labor starts, and there is an increased need to use forceps or vacuum to assist with delivery or b7 C-section (Cesarean birth) increases. Some treatment MS drugs may be safe to use during pregnancy; however, some drugs should not be taken, for example, baclofen (Gablofen, Lioresal), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), or solifenacin succinate (VESIcare), and most disease-modifying therapies (DMTs). Talk with your healthcare team about vitamins, supplements, and medications that you are taking if you are pregnant and have MS.
Can Stress Cause Multiple Sclerosis (MS)?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) results when your immune system attacks the cells of the brain and spinal cord. It is an autoimmune disease, a condition in which the body's immune system is misdirected and attacks its own cells. Stress can make it difficult for a person to manage MS symptoms. Regular exercise and mindful eating have been found to control the stress levels and overall health of people with MS.
What Are the Very First Signs of Multiple Sclerosis?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory, neurodegenerative autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord of the central nervous system (CNS). MS is one of the most common causes of non-injurious disability in young and middle-aged adults.
What Causes SIADH?
SIADH is the syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion. Several conditions can trigger abnormal ADH production, including infections, brain inflammation, hereditary factors, certain medications, asthma and other factors.
Early Signs of Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a progressive disease of the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system). MS is an autoimmune disease; the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks the cells of the nervous system.
What Is Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis?
The relapsing-remitting form of multiple sclerosis is characterized by clearly defined bouts of new or increased neurologic symptoms. After an attack, you will go through a period of healing called remission, during which you will have a few to no symptoms.
Alternative Treatment (CAM) for MS
The term alternative therapy, in general, is used to describe any medical treatment or intervention that has not been scientifically documented or identified as safe or effective for a specific condition. Alternative therapy encompasses a variety of disciplines that range from diet and exercise to mental conditioning to lifestyle changes.
Does Alcohol Mess With Multiple Sclerosis?
Studies suggest that consuming alcohol may worsen some symptoms of multiple sclerosis.
What are the First Signs of MS?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease in which a person’s immune system attacks the cells of their brain and spinal cord. It is an autoimmune disease — a condition in which the body’s immune system attacks its own tissues. MS damages the nervous system to the extent that most of the patients are physically disabled in a span of 20 to 25 years. And MS is two times more common in women than in men.
What Is the Difference Between Clinically Isolated Syndrome and Multiple Sclerosis?
Clinically isolated syndrome (CIS) is often considered as a phenotype or phase of multiple sclerosis (MS). The clinical symptoms of both CIS and MS look identical; however, they differ in the following ways.
What Is Sclerosis in Multiple Sclerosis?
The medical term sclerosis refers to abnormal hardening of body tissue. In multiple sclerosis, there is a development of hard areas called "plaques" along a neuron's axon (part of a nerve cell).
What Is the Main Cause of Multiple Sclerosis?
According to numerous studies, multiple sclerosis (MS) is a multifactorial disease with autoimmune, genetic, and environmental triggers. Learn nine potential triggers for MS.
What Are Some Taste Disorders?
The most common taste disorders involve phantom taste disorders, hypogeusia, ageusia and dysgeusia. Taste disorders may be related to diabetes, high blood pressure, poor nutrition, poor dental hygiene, COVID and nervous system disorders.
What Are the Early Signs of Multiple Sclerosis?
Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the central nervous system (spinal cord and brain) by damaging and destroying the protective myelin sheath around the nerve fibers. Someone with multiple sclerosis might develop problems with muscle control, vision, bladder control and other body functions.
Pain Management: Neuropathic Pain
Neuropathic pain is chronic pain resulting from injury to the nervous system. The injury can be to the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) or the peripheral nervous system (nerves outside the brain and spinal cord).
What Are the Phenotypes of Multiple Sclerosis (MS)?
Phenotypes can be useful for clinical diagnosis by characterizing the most typical patterns of progression identified in MS patients. Learn about the four basic phenotypes of MS.
What Are the Subtypes of Multiple Sclerosis (MS)?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that affects the body's nervous system. There are six distinct forms of MS, with symptoms ranging from mild to severe.
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Treatment & Diagnosis
- Liver Blood Tests
- MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging Scan)
- CT Scan vs. MRI
- Lumbar Puncture (LP or Spinal Tap)
- How Painful is a Lumbar Puncture?
- What Does an MS Attack Feel Like?
- What Is the Cause of Cotard’s Syndrome?
- Botox to Treat Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
- Baclofen Pump
- Who Is at High Risk for Multiple Sclerosis?
- Deep Brain Stimulation
- What Are Muscle Biopsy and Clinical and Laboratory Features of Neuromuscular Disease?
- IV Drug Infusion FAQs
- How Is a Lumbar Puncture Procedure Done?
- Numbness Toes
- Shortness of Breath (Dyspnea)
- Difficulty Urinating
- Blurred Vision
- Hand and Finger Numbness
- Tingling Tongue
- Fatigue, Tiredness, and Lethargy
- Loss of Temperature Sensation
- Frequent Urination
- Abnormal Facial Expressions
- Unsteady Gait
- Vision Loss
- Difficulty with Speech
- Eye Pain
- Memory Loss
- Double Vision
- Loss of Smell (Anosmia)
- Erectile Dysfunction (Impotence)
- Vaginal Dryness
- Pinpoint Pupils (Miosis)
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
- Fecal Incontinence
- Ptosis (Drooping Eye)
- Urinary Retention
- Inability to Exercise (Exercise Intolerance)
- Chronic Pain
- How to Choose a Doctor
- Doctor: Checklist to Take To Your Doctor's Appointment
- Urinary Incontinence
- Doctor: Getting the Most from Your Doctor's Appointment
- Advance Medical Directives
- Pain FAQs
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- Eyes and Eye Conditions FAQs
- The Hygiene Hypothesis
- Coping with a Bad Disease - Community Counts
- Shortness of Breath & VP Cheney
- Multiple Sclerosis: New Treatment Possibility for MS
- Multiple Sclerosis: New Multiple Sclerosis Treatment Suspended
- How Serious Is Multiple Sclerosis?
- How Does Multiple Sclerosis Affect the Body?
- Multiple Sclerosis Treatment
Medications & Supplements
- interferon beta-1a prefilled syringe - injection, Avonex
- interferon beta 1a - subcutaneous injection, Rebif
- Antidepressants (Depression Medications)
- Monoclonal Antibodies
- ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)
- Interferon: Potential COVID-19 Treatment
- Types of Multiple Sclerosis Medications and Treatments
- Interferon Beta-1b (Betaseron, Extavia)
- baclofen (Gablofen, Lioresal)
- glatiramer (Copaxone, Glatopa)
- Side Effects of Novantrone (mitoxantrone)
- dantrolene - oral, Dantrium
- Side Effects of Zanaflex (tizanidine)
- dalfampridine, Ampyra
- efgartigimod alfa-fcab (Vyvgart)
- Side Effects of Aubagio (teriflunomide)
- Avonex (interferon beta 1a injection)
- dimethyl fumarate (Tecfidera)
- fingolimod (Gilenya)
- interferon beta-1a (Rebif)
- natalizumab - injection, Tysabri
- mitoxantrone (Novantrone)
- Acthar Gel (repository corticotropin)
- teriflunomide (Aubagio)
- Lemtrada (alemtuzumab)
- Mayzent (siponimod)
- daclizumab (Zinbryta)
- Side Effects of Gilenya (fingolimod)
- Side Effects of Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate)
- Side Effects of Betaseron (interferon beta-1b)
- Vumerity (diroximel)
- Aubagio (teriflunomide)
- Ponvory (ponesimod)
- Side Effects of Ampyra (dalfampridine)
- Side Effects of Plegridy (peginterferon beta-1a)
- Bafiertam (monomethyl fumarate)
- Side Effects of Rebif (interferon beta-1a)
- peginterferon beta-1a (Plegridy)
- Cladribine Oral Tablets (10mg) for Multiple Sclerosis
- Copaxone (glatiramer acetate)
- Side Effects of Zinbryta (daclizumab)
- Side Effects of Copaxone (glatiramer)
Prevention & Wellness
- Selma Blair Exits 'Dancing With the Stars,' Citing MS Health Concerns
- Gut Microbiome Could Play Role in MS
- FDA Panel Skeptical of Controversial ALS Drug Ahead of Vote
- Lupus, MS and Other Autoimmune Disorders Raise Heart Risks
- New Multiple Sclerosis Treatment Shows Promise in Trial
- There's More MS in Northern Countries. Now, Researchers Find New Reason Why
- Who Fares Worse After Multiple Sclerosis Strikes?
- Cancer Med Might Be Powerful Treatment for MS
- Hope for 1st Vaccine Against Virus Driving 'Mono,' Cancers and Maybe MS
- Could the Keto Diet Help People With MS?
- Telemedicine Helped Many MS Patients During Pandemic
- Meat-Heavy Diets Might Have Link to MS
- Scientists Discover How the 'Mono' Virus Might Trigger MS
- More Evidence Links Mono to Multiple Sclerosis
- New MRI Technique Might Help Spot MS Sooner
- More Time Outdoors May Lower Risk of MS in Youth
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