A multiple sclerosis (MS) diagnosis is a life-altering event. MS is an unpredictable central nervous system disease, and they way it affects you could range from mild symptoms to a devastating loss of basic functions like walking and talking.
Not much is known about the causes of multiple sclerosis, but there are still steps you can take to diagnose and manage the condition.
What are the symptoms of MS?
The symptoms of MS are erratic. They may be mild or severe, of long duration or short. They may appear in various combinations, depending on the area of the nervous system affected.
The following are often initial symptoms of MS:
- Blurred or double vision
- Red-green color distortion
- Pain and loss of vision due to optic neuritis, an inflammation of the optic nerve
- Difficulty walking
- Paresthesia, a sensation of pain, numbness, or prickling, "pins and needles"
As the disease progress, new symptoms may arise, including:
- Muscle weakness in the extremities
- Difficulty with coordination. Impaired walking or standing may result; partial or complete paralysis is possible.
- Spasticity. The involuntary increased tone of muscles leading to stiffness and spasms.
- Fatigue. This may be triggered by physical activity, but may subside with rest; constant, persistent fatigue is possible.
- Loss of sensation
- Speech impediments
- Hearing loss
- Bowel and bladder disturbances
- Changes in sexual function