I found a very good .pdf document that provides a wealth of information in easy to read terms. I will try to paste portions of it here for others to read. I wish I had a way to make it available in its entirety. Its only 19 pages long, has numerous diagrams and covers it from A-Z. Just remember that anything you find via the Internet, you need to think about the accuracy and its origination. Anyone can put together a handout. Some are very good and timely, others may be outdated or incorrect.
I have read this document and the author has listed sources and references. Whats listed below may be old news to some, but for someone new it may provide a brief list of things to watch for and report to your neurologist.
Initial symptoms in order of frequency.
- Sensory Loss
- Optic Neuritis
- Bladder urge incontinence
- Paroxysmal Symptoms (brief attacks of paraesthesia + spasm and tonic
- Lhermitte’s sign (electric shock on neck flexion)
- Visual loss
- Facial palsy
Before a medical condition can be treated, it must be identified. In the process of listening to a patient's complaints, examining the patient, and taking the patient's personal, family and social history, the physician makes a mental list of the most likely causes. The doctor asks additional questions and performs tests to eliminate possibilities until he or she is satisfied that the single most likely cause has been identified.
Once a working diagnosis is reached, the physician prescribes a therapy. If the patient's condition does not improve, the diagnosis must be reassessed.
Here is a brief list, used when someone might be consider for MS. It's a pretty long list so it helps to explain why it may take so long to reach a diagnosis.
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
HIV Infection and AIDS
Lumbar (Intervertebral) Disk Disorders
Spinal Cord Infections
Spinal Cord Injuries
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
Tick-Borne Diseases, Lyme
Transient Ischemic Attack
Pertinent Findings on History
AIM is to exclude the diagnosis of every other disease on the list above; not easy
The review of systems should concentrate on the evidence of bladder, kidney, lung, or skin infection and irritative or obstructive bladder symptoms.
Classic MS symptoms
• Sensory loss (ie, paresthesias) usually is an early complaint.
• Motor (eg, muscle cramping secondary to spasticity) spinal cord symptoms
• autonomic (eg, bladder, bowel, sexual dysfunction) spinal cord symptoms
• Cerebellar symptoms (eg, Charcot triad of dysarthria, ataxia, tremor) may occur.
• fatigue (which occurs in 70% of cases)
• Subjective difficulties with attention span, concentration, memory, and judgment
may be noted any time during the disease course.
• About 50% of patients with MS have impairment, usually mild, in information
processing on neuropsychological testing.
• Depression is common, but euphoria is less common.
• Over the course of the disease, 5-10% of patients develop an overt psychiatric
disorder (eg, manic depression, paranoia, major depression) or dementia.
• Eye symptoms, including diplopia on lateral gaze, occur in 33% of patients.
• Trigeminal neuralgia may occur.
The Norse cultures suffer most (except Eskimos, who are paradoxically immune.) Also, the risk seems to be associated entirely with childhood years spent in a temperate climate
This was from the first page and if anyone wants it, send me an email. Whats listed above does not do the document justice.
me8980109 at yahoo dot com. Not sure if they are email friendly around here so I broke it up into plain text. I don't check it daily, so be patient. I will send it as a file attachment. Just mention that you wanted the MS guide.