Multiple Sclerosis (MS) (cont.)
Danette C. Taylor, DO, MS, FACN
Dr. Taylor has a passion for treating patients as individuals. In practice since 1994, she has a wide range of experience in treating patients with many types of movement disorders and dementias. In addition to patient care, she is actively involved in the training of residents and medical students, and has been both primary and secondary investigator in numerous research studies through the years. She is a Clinical Assistant Professor at Michigan State University's College of Osteopathic Medicine (Department of Neurology and Ophthalmology). She graduated with a BS degree from Alma College, and an MS (biomechanics) from Michigan State University. She received her medical degree from Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Her internship and residency were completed at Botsford General Hospital. Additionally, she completed a fellowship in movement disorders with Dr. Peter LeWitt. She has been named a fellow of the American College of Neuropsychiatrists. She is board-certified in neurology by the American Osteopathic Board of Neurology and Psychiatry. She has authored several articles and lectured extensively; she continues to write questions for two national medical boards. Dr. Taylor is a member of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Council (MSAC) of the Alzheimer's Association of Michigan, and is a reviewer for the journal Clinical Neuropharmacology.
Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.
In this Article
- Multiple sclerosis (MS) facts
- What is multiple sclerosis (MS)?
- What causes multiple sclerosis?
- What are the risk factors for developing MS?
- What are multiple sclerosis symptoms and signs?
- What are the different types of MS?
- How do doctors diagnose multiple sclerosis?
- What are multiple sclerosis treatment options?
- What is the prognosis and life expectancy for multiple sclerosis?
- Is it possible to prevent multiple sclerosis?
- What research is being done on MS?
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS) FAQs
- Find a local Neurologist in your town
What is the prognosis and life expectancy for multiple sclerosis?
Patients with multiple sclerosis are felt to have the same life expectancy of those without multiple sclerosis. However, for patients with severe, progressive forms of this disease, problems caused by disability may lead to complications such as pneumonia.
If patients are not treated, over 30% may develop pronounced problems with mobility. It is not yet known what the long-term outcome of patients who begin treatment at an early stage of their disease will be.
There are two extremes in multiple sclerosis. The first is a "benign" syndrome in which patients have numerous lesions identified on MRI imaging, but have few -- if any -- symptoms, even decades after their diagnosis. At the opposite end of the spectrum is a condition identified as the Marburg variant of multiple sclerosis, where rapidly progressive symptoms are seen and death may occur after a very short time.
Is it possible to prevent multiple sclerosis?
Without a clearly defined cause of multiple sclerosis, ways to prevent this disease have not yet been identified. Exercising regularly, getting sufficient sleep, or eating healthy meals will be of long-term benefit for many people, but have not been shown to be of help to prevent the development of multiple sclerosis.
What research is being done on MS?
Many areas related to the diagnosis and treatments of multiple sclerosis are being explored. These include more in-depth analysis of genetic factors, including factors which may help with the diagnosis and prediction of patient response to treatment options. Drugs which show promise in eliminating or preventing new multiple sclerosis lesions from forming are being evaluated; these new medications include drugs which would need to be injected, as well as drugs in a pill form. A good animal model of multiple sclerosis has not been yet developed; it is thought that a working animal model would help with the development of medications to treat multiple sclerosis. Stem cell therapy, which may help reboot a patient's immune system so that multiple sclerosis lesions no longer form, is being evaluated more closely.
National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Compston, A. and A. Coles. "Multiple sclerosis." Lancet 372.9648 (2008): 1502-1517.
Nicholas, J. A., et al. "Multiple sclerosis: Five new things." Neurology: Clinical Practice 3.5 (2013): 404-412.
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