Symptoms of MS

MS presents in many different ways. Some of the more common symptoms include extreme fatigue (often exacerbated by extremes in temperature), blurred or double vision, numbness and tingling, muscle spasms or weakness, bladder and/or bowel problems and impact on cognitive function.

However, there are many other symptoms experienced by people living with MS, to varying degrees - there is no such thing as a 'textbook' case as each individual person will present with a slightly different symptom or combination of symptoms.

How Centres Help You Manage Your Symptoms:

Our member centres offer therapies and services which provide support and relief from a large number of MS symptoms. Oxygen treatment is widely reported to help relieve fatigue as well as, in many cases, aiding improved cognition and reducing pain, among other things. Physiotherapy helps to maintain mobility and balance and helps to reduce spasticity. Complementary therapies such as acupuncture, massage, reiki and many others help not only with physical well-being but also mental and emotional support.

In addition MS can, in many cases, cause depression or anxiety, therefore counselling and other cognitive therapies are provided at many centres.

NB. Each centre offers a different mix of treatments, therapies and services - generally these are selected and offered based on capacity and demand, so individual centres should be contacted to see what they can provide.

Facts about MS

  • There is no known cure for MS - research is ongoing in this field however in the meantime symptom management is key and there are many ways in which this can be achieved either through medication (Disease Modifying Drugs (DMDs)), or physical and complementary therapies.
  • Approximately 100,000 people in the UK have been diagnosed with MS although, given the nature of the condition and the wide variety of symptoms it can cause, this figure could be much higher.
  • There are roughly three times as many women diagnosed with MS as men.
  • MS is generally diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40, although there are many cases of diagnoses in children and older people.
  • Many experts believe that MS is linked to vitamin D deficiency since cases are far more common in countries with less sunlight.
  • It can take a long time to receive a diagnosis of MS, since many symptoms can mirror those of other conditions. In general, if MS is suspected, a neurologist will confirm the diagnosis through the tests such as an MRI scan, evoked potentials (using electrodes to measure brain responsiveness) or a lumbar puncture (extracting cerebrospinal fluid under local anaesthetic to test for abnormalities).

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