What Is Multiple sclerosis(MS)?|
MS is common and prevalent disease that affects the nervous system, caused by the loss of the protective sheath surrounding the nerves (called myelin). Myelin facilitates the rapid conduction of electrical pulses along the nerves.
MS is called "multiple" because it attacks scattered areas of both the brain and spinal cord and the term "sclerosis" describes the replacement of myelin with sclera - scar tissue. Affected areas means messages can not be transmitted properly causing subsequent disturbances in sensation, movement and vision.
It is unknown how and why MS occurs, it is a confusing and debilitating disease and sufferers often turn to unorthodox treatments in desperation. Professionals can be of assistance by providing families with consistent, sound and non-judgement advice.
What Are The Symptoms of MS?
- loss of vision in both or one eye.
- weakness in arms or legs
- muscles spasms in the arms or legs
- loss of sensation almost anywhere in the body
- disturbance in bowel or bladder control
- depression and mood changes
- variety of other unusual neurological symptoms
How is it Diagnosed
Unfortunately there is no single diagnostic test for MS, its diagnosis is based on a combination of blood and protein tests and CAT scans (imaging of the brain). The symptoms of the condition also helps the clinician diagnose the problem.
Currently there is no proven cure for changing the course of MS or preventing further deterioration. A variety of medical interventions such as physical and occupational therapies are standard aids in weakness, constipation, incontinence, incoordination and control tremors. Sometimes drug therapy is used to reduce muscle spasms and feelings of dizziness. Steroid therapy used usually when MS is uncontrollable and can cause increased appetite, weight gain, fluid retention, nervousness and insomnia.
Sufferers of MS and their families should regularly contact and communicate with their local MS support group as MS sufferers need not feel isolated and distanced from society.