I have a question regarding O bands. Will O bands only show in your CSF if you are having an MS flare up or will they always show up once they are there?
I hope that makes sense what I'm asking! :)
Please try to be more specific with your question and why you are asking.
To follow is my understanding; I ask the community to correct me on ny misinformation.
CSF can and may show o-bands, When it comes to MS, they are looking for o-bans which are unique to CSF which do not show up in the serum (blood sample). This is why the LP protocol for MS testing requires that blood be drawn at essentially the same time that the CSF is drawn.
It is the opinion of the scientific community that with the case of MS, once o-bands show uniquely in the CSF they will always be present and can in fact in crease in time, but never disappear. Other diseases may show 0-bands unique to the CSF for a period of time and then fade away.
To the best of my knowledge, a flare has no impact whatsoever on 0-bands. It may however, elevate myelin basic protein or the IgG index.
My Neurologist explained O-bands are like tree rings. They never go away. I had twelve in my CFS and none in my blood. He said that told him in my case I had had MS a very long time since they are like tree rings and I had had my first Neurological attack in 1965 and this was 2009. There are people with MS who have no O-bands. O-bands do not mean you have MS since there are other diseases which show O-bands only in the CSF. I had to be tested for some other diseases such as Lupus after my LP came back with so many o-bands. When those tests were negative I was finally diagnosed with MS.
Like diamonds, o-bands are forever :-) You do not need to be in a flare/relapse for them to appear. The important thing is that they appear only in your spinal fluid (CSF) and not in the blood sample (serum) taken at the same time the CSF was collected.
If they are unique to your CSF that points towards MS. If there are matching o-bands in the serum it points away from MS.
I thought your question was quite clear.
Welcome to our corner of the web
As Lulu says, and HVAC as well, once they are there, they are there forever and no, you do not necessarily get them every time you have a flair. I have had MS for years and I do not have any O bands present in my CSF. I do have lesions in at least 4-5 places in my MRI's of my brain.
Your EMG will not show MS but will show muscle damage, if any. I have not had a VEP done, so can't help you there. The LP won't take long at all, the the wait as the O bands is the longest test. There is an excellent health page in our list of "stuff" to the right, that explains how they find the O bands.
Have you had an MRI? Does your neuro suspect MS? Perhaps you could tell us a little about your self and your neuro problems!
Again, welcome and keep us posted, we learn from each other!
FWIW, although the conventional wisdom is that o-bands in MS don't disappear, in this study (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22185806) they found that "Of the remaining 170 [people with MS who had a repeat LP] only 38 (22%) changed their OCB status, 30 from negative to positive and eight from positive to negative." So it seems that it is possible, unless those people happened to be mis-dx'd with MS. However, it would be uncommon and as everyone said, there's no need to worry about whether you're in a flair or not when you have your LP.
As an interesting aside, a recent study found that Tysabri seems to have caused o-bands to disappear in a percentage of patients: http://multiple-sclerosis-research.blogspot.com/2012/11/research-natalizumab-reduces-b-cell.html (BTW, if you're interested in MS research, this is a great blog run by MS researchers).
Lola, I hope you get some solid answers from your tests.
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