This is a chronic neurological condition where the body reacts against its own nervous tissue (an autoimmune process).
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic disease of the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord). It starts with patches of inflammation (plaque) that randomly develop in parts of the central nervous system. This leads to the destruction of the protective coating of the nerves (myelin sheath) and inability of the nerves to properly send signals between the brain, spinal cord, and rest of the body.
In most cases, multiple sclerosis (MS) can be classified as one of four types.
The symptoms of MS can involve different parts of the body, vary in type and severity, and mimic other neurological diseases. They may develop quickly and resolve rapidly, or last for a long time and get progressively worse.
Contact your healthcare provider if you have any of the above symptoms. They will do a physical and neurological examination.
Because there is no single test to specifically confirm the diagnosis of MS, you may need a series of tests. These tests can also be used to rule out other conditions that mimic MS. Some of the recommended tests include lab work, an MRI, a test that measures electrical responses in your brain, and a lumbar puncture. If the examination and testing show you have MS, your specific treatment will depend on your symptoms and the type of MS you have. Some things you can do to help you feel better and control your symptoms include eating a healthy diet, exercising as recommended by your healthcare provider, limiting stress, and avoiding overheating.
Your healthcare provider may also recommend medications to help with your symptoms.
Finally, electrical stimulation may be used to relieve pain in areas other than the back and face.
If you have symptoms of multiple sclerosis, you should see your healthcare provider.
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