Symptoms and Signs of Managing MS

Medical Author: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Medically Reviewed on 8/1/2022

Doctor's Notes on Managing MS

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an immune-mediated inflammatory process that affects the body’s central nervous system (CNS), which is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. Nerves are surrounded by a myelin sheath that insulates and protects them from damage, and that also allows nerve signals to get from the brain or spinal cord to a body part. In MS, the body's immune system attacks the myelin sheath, causing messages within the CNS to be altered or stopped altogether. 

Symptoms of MS and even the drugs used to treat the disease can impact a patient's mobility, energy level, eating habits, and feelings. They can affect a person's overall well-being. Symptoms of MS include

  • decreased muscle strength,
  • fatigue,
  • visual changes,
  • reduced energy levels and endurance,
  • decreased bladder and bowel control,
  • depression,
  • loss of bone mass,
  • pain,
  • numbness or tingling,
  • anxiety,
  • facial pain,
  • spinning sensation (vertigo),
  • hearing loss,
  • painful muscle spasms,
  • weakness in one or more of the arms or legs,
  • electrical-type pain sensations,
  • constipation, and
  • urinary retention.

What Is the Treatment for Multiple Sclerosis (MS)?

Treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS) may vary depending on the type of MS that is present. 

Treatment for MS attacks includes corticosteroids to reduce inflammation.

Disease-modifying therapy medications can help reduce flares and can help slow down progressive MS:

Injectable medications for MS

Oral medications for MS

  • Cladribine (Mavenclad)
  • Dimethyl fumarate (Tecfidera)
  • Diroximel fumarate (Vumerity)
  • Fingolimod (Gilenya)
  • Monomethyl fumarate (Bafiertam)
  • Ozanimod (Zeposia)
  • Siponimod (Mayzent)
  • Teriflunomide (Aubagio)

Infused medications for MS

Other medications can be used to treat specific symptoms of multiple sclerosis when they affect individual patients, such as: 

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Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.