People who haven’t quite felt themselves lately tend to wonder why. Most will brush off the idea of seeing a doctor for an MS diagnosis and attribute whatever they are feeling to being a bit ‘under the weather’. Some symptoms of MS are similar to those experienced by the flu or from overworking the body, which is why people don’t automatically assume they have Multiple Sclerosis and schedule a doctor’s appointment.

There are around 50 symptoms MS diagnosis tests will check for. Check a list of MS symptoms and make a note of which ones you are exhibiting. Any of these symptoms can come and go, so be sure to write down the date they manifest and the date they subside. The doctor will be able to use these notes for the MS diagnosis tests.


MS Diagnosis Criteria


Doctors follow a set of criteria when beginning a diagnosis for Multiple Sclerosis. There are always individuals who don’t fit one of the criteria listed, but this isn’t very common. First of all, the age when MS first appears in a person is any time between 20 and 50 years old. Secondly, the signs and symptoms displayed need to have something to do with the spinal cord or the brain being affected by the illness. There also need to be some tests run, such as a scan of the head. An MRI and MS diagnosis go hand in hand. This type of scan is used to detect any lesions on the brain or spinal cord. Another criterion on the list includes the presence of 2 or more episodes where symptoms lasted for a 24 hour period. Each episode has to be one month apart from the previous one. The doctor’s exam should produce objective evidence that there is an actual disease attacking the spinal cord or brain. Finally on the list of criteria; there can’t be any other explanation for the symptoms shown.


MS Diagnosis Symptoms are Connected Lesions


An MS diagnosis without lesions is possible, but not common. The MRI is performed after the patient is injected with gadolinium, a colorless dye used to highlight areas where active lesions are present. An MRI is used in an MS diagnosis to see what parts of the brain and spinal cord are affected by lesions cause by MS. Lesions on the brain affect balance, memory, thought processes, and speech, while lesions on the spinal cord affect muscle movement. The leg and foot muscles seem to be the most affected by MS. MRIs will also show many, but not all, older MS lesions.


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