How common is multiple sclerosis?
Multiple sclerosis is the most common condition that affects the central nervous system in young adults.
Author: Nikki Wallis
First answered: 16 Oct 2014
Last reviewed: 17 Oct 2018
Rating: 4.0/5 Votes: 139
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Multiple sclerosis is a condition in which the outer layer of nerves in the brain and spinal cord become damaged. Damage to this outer layer means that signals move less effectively between neurons. The damage causes scars, called plaques or lesions, that can …
The symptoms of multiple sclerosis vary, as they are related to damage in the brain and spinal cord, so they will depend on which specific areas have been damaged. Some of the more typical symptoms may include visual disturbances, problems with …
The exact cause of multiple sclerosis is yet to be clearly understood.
Women are more likely to develop multiple sclerosis than men. People in countries that receive lower levels of sunshine have higher rates of multiple sclerosis. It is most commonly diagnosed in people between 20 and 40 years of age.
There is no single diagnostic test used for multiple sclerosis. Instead, diagnosis is based on lesions (scarring) found in the brain or spinal cord by MRI scans and assessment of neurological signs and symptoms.
The treatment of multiple sclerosis may vary, depending on the type of multiple sclerosis and the severity of symptoms. A range of medications may be prescribed to treat the symptoms and slow disease progression.
There is no cure for multiple sclerosis, but it is not a fatal condition. People with multiple sclerosis essentially have a life expectancy similar to people in the general population.