Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease of the central nervous system characterized by the destruction of the myelin sheath surrounding neurons in the brain.
This destruction slows down the transmission of signals along the nerves, which causes the symptoms associated with MS.
Multiple sclerosis: what you should know
- The earliest MS symptom is often blurred or double vision, red-green color distortion, or blindness in one eye.
In addition to those above, early symptoms of MS include the following:
- Unexplained fatigue (more likely to occur mid-afternoon) accompanied by increased muscle weakness, memory problems, sleepiness or drowsiness
- Sensitivity to heat
- Uncharacteristic clumsiness, such as dropping things, knocking things over or tripping
- What causes MS is not known, but genetic predisposition and environmental factors both play some role.
- Although there is no cure for MS, the majority of patients are mildly affected by the disease. In the worst cases, MS can render a person unable to write, speak or walk.