Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis three years ago, Tricia Smith is feeling good and now makes the seven-hour trip from her new home in St. Louis for treatment at the OSU Multiple Sclerosis Center.
Although there is currently no cure for multiple sclerosis (MS), extensive research at OSU Medical Center is giving many patients with MS a normal life.
Tricia Smith was diagnosed with MS three years ago after she experienced randomly recurring numbness on one side of her body. “I minimized the symptoms at first,” says Smith, a public relations professional. “But when I was finally diagnosed with MS, I was fortunate to be referred to the OSU Multiple Sclerosis Center.”
The symptoms and disease progression of MS vary widely among patients and often within individual patients, according to Michael Racke, MD, professor and chair of Neurology. “Our program offers the entire spectrum of proven treatments, personalized for each patient based on age, overall health, medical history, extent of the disease and tolerance for specific medications, procedures or therapies." Clinical trials on new combinations of drugs and other therapies are also offered to patients.
Additionally, advanced imaging technology at Ohio State offers new insights into MS. “MS causes lesions on the tissue that sheaths nerve cells,” explains Racke. “Our imaging technology gives us exquisite detail into the pathology of these lesions, which helps determine which drugs are best for each patient.”
Technology isn’t the only thing that sets Ohio State’s Multiple Sclerosis Center apart. “We offer our patients education, symptom management strategies and support services, such as physical and occupational therapy, a social worker and a spasticity clinic,” says Judy Lima, RN, BSN, MSCN, a clinic/research nurse at the Center.
Although Smith recently moved to St. Louis, she still makes the seven-hour trip to Columbus to continue her treatment. “You can’t afford to fool around with this disease,” she says, “and I believe I’m getting the highest caliber of care at the Multiple Sclerosis Center at OSU.