Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms Information

Multiple sclerosis, or MS, is a disease that occurs when the coating of nerve fibers breaks down. Because this can happen in many parts of the body, it causes different patients to show various combinations of symptoms. Since it does this, it is often difficult to diagnose and treat.

Some of the first signs, which also mimic other medical conditions, include the following. Multiple sclerosis patients report chronic fatigue as their first sign, generally followed by numbness or pain to the affected part of the body. Muscles may involuntarily stiffen and spasm, causing pain or numbness, as well as a feeling of tightness in the area where this happens. The nerve damage behind this condition many times also manifests itself as coordination problems when the arms and legs are the first parts affected. In cases where the nerve damage hits the legs, outward signs arise as the person’s ability to walk declines or becomes more shaky.

Sometimes, these symptoms and the related dizziness and vertigo that can accompany them cause the patient to fall and become injured. The patients experiencing these difficulties may or may not also have vision problems contributing to their increasing inability to be mobile.

Should the nerve damage happen closer to the digestive tract, those diagnosed with multiple sclerosis can have bladder and bowel dysfunction as well. Fortunately, such difficulty can be managed and even disguised through the use of incontinence underwear or medications meant for those symptoms. They will not cure the symptoms, but can ease the embarrassment the patient feels around others and give some independence.

In many cases, symptoms such as these, or the multiple sclerosis occurring in the brain, can lead to mental and emotional troubles. Emotional problems, such as but not limited to depression, come on and increase as both nerve damage and other symptoms increase. As the patient and his or her loved ones grieve the diagnosis, depression generally comes on but may not stay.

In a majority of multiple sclerosis cases, the decreased capacity of nerves to transmit data causes cognitive function to decline. This can be noticed in sensory areas, memory recall, and linguistic ability, depending upon which area of the brain is most affected by the damage.

Less frequently, multiple sclerosis patients experience such problems as headaches, itching, speech disorders, hearing loss, seizures, and breathing problems. These, if they do manifest, will occur later in the course of the condition. In cases where they do occur, these symptoms, especially speech disorders and hearing loss, compound the embarrassment the patient feels by making him or her less able to communicate with others. Itching would generally only come about as nerve damage reaches closer to the skin surface, whereas the progression of multiple sclerosis often goes from other internal nerves toward the brain.

The use of medications and other medical technology to control the condition has led to the less frequent appearance of acute nerve damage. This is important as the nerve damage sometimes brings on seizures and breathing problems that can be very dangerous to a patient.


Related Posts