I finally got my spinal tap results back, and between that and my VER, my doc said it was enough to diagnose me with MS!! My joy was taken from me when he said " however"!!! My VER showed abnormalities in both eyes, so now I'm waiting on blood work to see if it's not NMO. Never heard of this before, but he kinda explained it. Sounds like MS's evil twin!!
So, on the 19th I will either start Avonex or treatment for NMO (devic disease)!!!
Do you know what the results of your LP were? I ask because results are usually different for MS vs NMO. In MS, there are usually O-bands (but not always, I didn't have any); and in NMO, there are usually not O-bands.
We are talking about a disease called NeuroMyelitis Optica or Devic's Disease. this used to be considered a variant of MS, but has since been shown to be a separate entity. The "diagnostics" can be very important here because there is an antibody that can be tested for which confirm the presence of NMO. The Anti-NMO antibody (strangely enough). The problem is only about (??) 78% of people with NMO have this antibody. So when the test is positive it is the real deal, but when it is negative you are not as sure.
NMO is far, far more rare than MS and also tends to be far more serious and disabling, so we are hoping for MS, I would presume. The attacks tend to be more frequent and are often more severe than in MS. (exceptions occur)
Other differences are:
1) In NMO there tend to be lesions only in the spinal cord and the optic nerve - one or both eyes. Damage to sight is more common in NMO. In MS, it is more common to have brain lesions. (exceptions occur)
2) DeeVee was correct that in the LP MS tends to have O-Bands, but they are typically negative in NMO. (exceptions occur)
3) The spinal lesions in NMO tend to be much more extensive than in MS. They often extend through several veterbral levels (many centimeters in length)
4) Blindness is more likely to be permanent in NMO.
Tiffany, is your brain MRI normal? I don't remember your details. Do you have spinal lesions and O-Bands?
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