Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a nervous system disease that affects your brain and spinal cord. It damages the myelin sheath, the material that surrounds and protects your nerve cells. This damage slows down or blocks messages between your brain and your body, leading to the symptoms of MS. They can include
- Visual disturbances
- Muscle weakness
- Trouble with coordination and balance
- Sensations such as numbness, prickling, or "pins and needles"
- Thinking and memory problems
No one knows what causes MS. It may be an autoimmune disease, which happens when your immune system attacks healthy cells in your body by mistake. Multiple sclerosis affects women more than men. It often begins between the ages of 20 and 40. Usually, the disease is mild, but some people lose the ability to write, speak, or walk.
There is no single test for MS. Doctors use a medical history, physical exam, neurological exam, MRI, and other tests to diagnose it. There is no cure for MS, but medicines may slow it down and help control symptoms. Physical and occupational therapy may also help.
Source: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center’s Multiple Sclerosis Center – the state’s first center dedicated to caring for MS patients – provides leading edge care for people with MS. Our comprehensive program of clinical services is supported by basic and clinical research. Since the Multiple Sclerosis Center was started at Ohio State in 1982, our physician-scientists have gained national recognition in improving treatment options for multiple sclerosis patients. Currently, the OSU Multiple Sclerosis Center is one of the largest MS Centers in the country with more than 4,000 patients. The OSU Multiple Sclerosis Center is located at 2050 Kenny Road in the Martha Morehouse Medical Pavilion.
Ohio State developed the first Multiple Sclerosis Center in Ohio, one of the largest programs for MS care in the country. Schedule an appointment with Ohio State's multiple sclerosis experts. Call 614-293-4969.