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MS or No MS. no one can tell me

I am a 40 year old male, I have been suffering with migraine type headaches, numbness in my hands and legs and general fatigue for almost two years now. I have two close relatives with MS. So far I have been treated for migraines, pinched nerves and other non specific things. My MRI’s always come back clean. my neurologist has ruled out MS based on my scans. What is your opinion?
1 Responses
987762 tn?1331027953
COMMUNITY LEADER
Hi and welcome,

It's harder to come up with an opinion on MS or not when there is very little information provided, so all i can do is speak in general terms and stick to the basics of MS...

Technically MS is a disease that affects the central nervous system and because of that most of the symptoms that are associated with MS are also found in many different types of conditions, most of which are not neurological but they can still cause some similar/same symptoms as a neurological condition like MS.

There are also symptom patterns, along with how the symptoms presented and development over time that are suggestive/consistent and or that point away from a condition like MS being a potential causation.    

MS has been predominantly diagnosed using the Mcdonald criteria since it was developed, latest version was in 2017 and the criteria relies heavily on MRI evidence.    

MS is not one of the genetically inheritable conditions so it's not a disease that is passed down from generation to generation. The cause of MS is not yet known, but what is well recognised is that both genetics and environmental factors play an important role in the susceptibility of MS.   Whilst MS can run in families it's not typical, it's more common to be the only person in your family with MS.

To give you a basic idea with identical twins, if 1 twin is dx with MS the other identical twin has a 1 in 4 chance of being dx with MS too, or in other words thats about a 75% chance of NOT being dx with MS. The risk of developing MS does increase slightly with dx first degree relatives eg parents, siblings and even your own children but it is far less than what it is for identical twins. The further removed the dx family member is to you the less the odds are, so that's grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins etc and off the top of my head it's under 10% increase.

Technically Multiple Sclerosis translates to multiple scars, the MRI shows those scars but so does the physical body ie your neurological clinical signs so MS can't really be ruled out by only your MRI evidence alone, there should be more diagnostic evidence that is collectively also pointing away from a neurological condition like MS being the likely causation.

Pinch nerves are to do with the peripheral nervous system, the symptoms can be the same or similar but presentation, pattern and development over time is different to what is typical for MS, and IF your saying the numbness is bilateral (left and right sides) and in both upper and lower limbs "hands and legs" that would be more suggestive/consistent of a peripheral nervous system issue than what typically happens when it's MS.

Typical red flags pointing away from a neurological condition like MS would be clear brain and spinal MRI's, symptoms which are bilateral, in both upper and lower limbs etc so with out anything more to go by it's just more likely that MS is not a potential cause of your medical issues..

Hope that helps......JJ
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