Let's Talk About MS Treatment

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There may not be a cure for multiple sclerosis quite yet, but there are so many reasons for hope. Thanks to a better understanding of MS risk factors, plus staggering advances in scientific research and medication development, people with MS now have a better chance than ever to live well—and even thrive—with this disease. If you’ve been diagnosed with MS, you and your medical team will fight MS on multiple fronts. We’re here to help guide you on different treatment options and approaches. Read on.

Wait, What's MS Again?

Multiple sclerosis is a type of autoimmune disease that affects the myelin sheath, the protective tissue that surrounds nerves. For reasons that aren't exactly clear, somehow the body mistakes myelin for a foreign invader and launches an immune attack against it, eventually causing scars (or scleroses) in the brain, spinal cord, or optic nerves. It's this damage that contributes to some of the common MS symptoms, like numbness, pins and needles, and blurry vision. Why? They interrupt the signals traveling from the brain.

There are several types of MS, but the most common one is called relapsing-remitting (RRMS), and it's characterized by periods of disease activity (the relapses) followed by periods of remission. Some people with RRMS may go on to develop secondary progressive (SPMS). During this later stage of the disease (it's typically diagnosed at least 10 years after RRMS and often much later), nerve damage tends to slowly accumulate without any periods of remission. The most rare type of MS is primary progressive (PPMS). Symptoms and disability tends to build steadily from the start, with few or no remissions.

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