Multiple Sclerosis

Wrapping up multiple sclerosis

With one drug to shut down its progression and another to undo its damage, plus a worldwide effort stalking the origins of multiple sclerosis, MS doesn't stand a chance.

Apr 26, 2016
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Yoga and aquatic exercise can help combat MS symptoms

Exercise can have a positive influence on certain symptoms of multiple sclerosis: Patients who do yoga and aquatic exercise suffer less from fatigue, depression and paresthesia, as reported by researchers from the University ...

May 03, 2016
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How relationships influence health

For three years, Whitney Dafoe's world has been a darkened room at the end of a hallway in the back of his childhood home. An insidious disease, one with no known cause or cure, has slowly stolen his life from him, turning ...

May 17, 2016
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Is addiction a brain disease?

The opioid abuse epidemic is a full-fledged item in the 2016 campaign, and with it questions about how to combat the problem and treat people who are addicted.

May 11, 2016
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Gene mutations shown to cause form of HSP

Scientists at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital (MNI) have identified novel gene mutations that cause hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), a step forward in efforts to treat this debilitating disease.

May 10, 2016
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Exercise reduces fatigue, depression, paresthesia in MS

(HealthDay)—For females with multiple sclerosis (MS), the addition of exercise programs to standard immune modulatory therapy can improve fatigue, depression, and paresthesia, according to a study published in the May issue ...

May 10, 2016
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Multiple sclerosis (abbreviated to MS, known as disseminated sclerosis or encephalomyelitis disseminata) is an inflammatory disease in which the fatty myelin sheaths around the axons of the brain and spinal cord are damaged, leading to demyelination and scarring as well as a broad spectrum of signs and symptoms. 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. MS was first described in 1868 by Jean-Martin Charcot.

MS affects the ability of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord to communicate with each other effectively. Nerve cells communicate by sending electrical signals called action potentials down long fibers called axons, which are contained within an insulating substance called myelin. In MS, the body's own immune system attacks and damages the myelin. When myelin is lost, the axons can no longer effectively conduct signals. The name multiple sclerosis refers to scars (scleroses—better known as plaques or lesions) particularly in the white matter of the brain and spinal cord, which is mainly composed of myelin. Although much is known about the mechanisms involved in the disease process, the cause remains unknown. Theories include genetics or infections. Different environmental risk factors have also been found.

Almost any neurological symptom can appear with the disease, and often progresses to physical and cognitive disability. MS takes several forms, with new symptoms occurring either in discrete attacks (relapsing forms) or slowly accumulating over time (progressive forms). Between attacks, symptoms may go away completely, but permanent neurological problems often occur, especially as the disease advances.

There is no known cure for multiple sclerosis. Treatments attempt to return function after an attack, prevent new attacks, and prevent disability. MS medications can have adverse effects or be poorly tolerated, and many patients pursue alternative treatments, despite the lack of supporting scientific study. The prognosis is difficult to predict; it depends on the subtype of the disease, the individual patient's disease characteristics, the initial symptoms and the degree of disability the person experiences as time advances. Life expectancy of people with MS is 5 to 10 years lower than that of the unaffected population.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA

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