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Multiple Sclerosis: Signs and Symptoms

The symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS) may vary, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This is due to the fact that both the severity and the location may be different for each MS attack.


However, some signs of MS are observed more often than others. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society (NMSS) has identified several common symptoms:



  • Around 80 percent of those with MS experience feeling very tired, notes NMSS. Fatigue may lead to serious problems in doing everyday tasks and functioning well both at home and in the workplace. The NIH reports that fatigue may appear more frequently in patients as the disease worsens. MS patients may also feel more tired later in the day.

Vision Disorders

  • NMSS notes that difficulty seeing is often the first sign of MS. The condition may lead to such problems as double vision, eye discomfort or pain, or blurry vision. It’s also possible for vision loss to occur. According to the Mayo Clinic, partial or complete loss of sight generally first occurs in only one eye.

Balance Problems

  • Many people with MS have trouble walking properly. They may have problems with their balance and coordination as they move their arms and legs while walking. These gait difficulties may lead to limited mobility. Loss of balance may also put MS patients at risk for other injuries from falling.

Numbness and Pain

  • Feelings of numbing, tingling, or other abnormal sensations are often among the first signs of MS. These feelings may occur throughout the body, including the face, arms, and legs. Some people with MS may feel facial pain, or experience painful muscle spasms. According to NMSS, research has shown that around half of people with MS feel pain sometimes, and half feel it consistently.

Bowel and Bladder Problems

  • Around 80 percent of MS patients eventually have bladder dysfunction, reports NMSS. Loss of bowel control is another frequent problem. Because of this, diarrhea and other stomach issues are common signs of MS.

Additional Symptoms

  • The NMSS states the most common MS symptoms may also include:

    • Feeling dizzy (lightheaded or vertigo)
    • Emotional and cognitive changes
    • Sexual difficulties
    • Spasticity

    Some less common symptoms that some people with MS may still experience include:
    • Problems with speech
    • Difficulty swallowing
    • Headaches
    • Hearing loss
    • Itchiness
    • Trouble breathing
    • Tremor or seizures

    Some symptoms of MS may also occur due to other health problems. If in doubt, see your doctor to help you determine whether you are experiencing symptoms of MS or another condition.

Via : Ehow

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