Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that affects the Central Nervous System (CNS)—the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. MS causes damage to myelin, the covering of nerve cells, and can cause damage directly to the nerve cells. This damage is thought to be caused by the body’s own immune cells attacking the CNS. When the myelin and/or nerve cells are damaged, the signals from the CNS to other parts of the body can be interrupted, resulting in many of the common symptoms of MS.
Common symptoms of MS include difficulties with walking, vision problems, sensation disturbances (“pins and needles” or numbness) and fatigue. Every patient with MS has a different experience and may not have the same symptoms. Symptoms can come and go or get worse over time. When symptoms come and go, these are often called relapses, exacerbations, or flare-ups.
While there is no cure yet for MS, there have been many medicines and therapies developed through decades of research. The goal of the center is to work with each individual patient to determine the best treatment course to help reduce symptoms and attacks and hopefully prevent progression of any disability. Early treatment can provide the best outcomes for children and teens with MS.