It is an autoimmune inflammatory disease in which the fatty myelin sheaths around the nerve of the brain and spinal cord are damaged, leading to demyelination and scarring as well as a broad spectrum of signs and symptoms depending upon the extent of nerve damage.
Prevalence: Disease onset usually occurs in young adults, and it is more common in women. It has a prevalence that ranges between 2 and 150 per 100,000.
- Most likely MS occurs as a result of some combination of
- Infectious factors
- Possibly other factors like vascular problems.
Classification: Several subtypes, or patterns of progression, have been described. Subtypes use the past course of the disease in an attempt to predict the future course. They are important not only for prognosis but also for therapeutic decisions.
- relapsing remitting,
- secondary progressive
- primary progressive
- progressive relapsing
Sign and Symptoms
Motor symptoms: Spasticity and reflex spasm, Weakness, Contractures, Gait disturbances, Fatigue.
Cerebellar and bulbar symptoms: Resultant swallowing and respiratory difficulties, Nystagmus, Intention tremor.
Sensory symptoms: Numbness, Paresthesia, Distortion of superficial sensation, Pain.
Visual Symptoms: Diminished acuity, Double vision, Scotoma, Ocular pain.
Bladder/Bowel Symptoms: Urgency, Frequency, Incontinence, Urinary retention, constipation.
Cognitive and Emotional symptoms: Depression, Lability, Disorders of judgement, Memory disturbances, diminished conceptual thinking, Decreased attention and concentration, dysphasia.
Fatigue: This is one of the most common symptoms of multiple sclerosis, and affects up to 90 percent of patients.
Rehabilitation: Rehabilitation is designed to help the MS patient improve or maintain their ability to perform effectively at home and at work. The focus is on general fitness and energy management, while at the same time dealing with the problems related to mobility and accessibility, speech and swallowing, memory, thinking, and perception.
Physical therapy: aims to provide people with the skills to maintain and restore maximum movement and functional ability.
Occupational therapy: The therapeutic use of work, self-care, and play activities to increase development and prevent disability.