NOTE: I do not have a medical degree of any sort. The following information is my personal description of the disease as I understand it from what I’ve been told by doctors and from my own personal research. Please feel free to email me at email@example.com if you have any questions.
So, you did the tests and everything came back positive for MS… You got a second opinion and it looks like you do in fact have Multiple Sclerosis… You are overwhelmed and you are scared. First of all let me say, I’m sorry your reading this wether your a new MS patient or the family member/friend of a new MS patient. Secondly I have to say, being confused and scared is normal but my goal here is to show you that you shouldn’t be scared once you are educated about this disease.
What Is Multiple Sclerosis (MS)?
Between 250,000 and 350,000 people have MS in the United States alone which means about 200 people are diagnosed with MS a week. As common as a disease as MS can be, surprisingly, not too many people know what it really is.
Shortly put, MS is a disease that attacks the central nervous system (Brain and Spinal Cord) resulting in damage to Myelin (The protective insulation around our nerves) which lastly results in the symptoms that MS patients experience. There are 4 different types of MS
but the most commonly diagnosed form is Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis (RRMS) which is described as MS with periods of relapses (exacerbations) and remissions (periods where symptoms have subsided)
For a detailed description of what Multiple Sclerosis is and how it works, CLICK HERE.
What Should I Know About Multiple Sclerosis?
First thing people want to know, “Is there a cure?” No… Unfortunately a cure has not yet been discovered but don’t let that get you down! Right now we have what are known as “Disease Modifying Medications
” which slow down or alter the course of the disease. These medications along with medical steroids
allow many people with MS to live a healthy, fulfilling life, sometimes completely symptom free for years! That leads me to the next question your probably asking, “How long do these exacerbations last and how long will my remission last?” Well the truth is your never going to get a straight answer… MS effects everyone differently, but typically an exacerbation can last several weeks to several months. Same goes for remission periods, my first “remission period” lasted about a month before I started experiencing new symptoms but many people go years before relapsing. It’s different for everyone so you unfortunately have to wait and see how the disease effects you.