Download Multiple Sclerosis For Dummies by Rosalind, Ph.D. Kalb, Nancy, RN, EdD, MSCN Holland, Barbara, PDF

By Rosalind, Ph.D. Kalb, Nancy, RN, EdD, MSCN Holland, Barbara, MD Giesser

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26 Part I: When MS Becomes Part of Your Life So, if you go to your primary care physician with problems or symptoms that sound like MS, he or she may recommend that you see a neurologist to help sort out the evidence. Chapter 4 gives you tips on how to find the right neurologist and other MS specialists for your healthcare team. Before we describe exactly what’s involved in the diagnostic process, you first have to understand what the neurologist is trying to find. In order to make a diagnosis of MS, he or she must find evidence of dissemination in time and space.

The demyelination results in a loss of insulation around the neurons’ axons, which slows or interrupts nervous system conduction. And finally, the axons can be broken (a process referred to as axonal loss), which breaks the connections between the nervous system and parts of the body. ) This whole process results in the symptoms that we describe in Chapters 7, 8, and 9. ) Chapter 1: Meeting MS Face to Face Normal neuron Cell body Damaged neuron Dendrites Neuron with severed axon Axon Myelin sheath Synaptic bulbs Axon Demyelinated area Axon is completely severed Figure 1-2: Healthy and demyelinated axons.

It can indicate whether you have ever experienced any symptoms — no matter how mild or fleeting — that may be indicative of MS. Examining your history is one of the primary ways the neurologist has for identifying past MS relapses. For example, suppose Susie goes to her neurologist complaining of numbness and tingling down her right side that began about a week ago. When taking her history, the neurologist finds that Susie experienced an episode of blurred vision when she was a teenager. The blurred vision passed after a few days and no one gave it another thought.

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