MS testing is the process by which medical doctors determine whether a patient has MS. There are numerous steps involved in testing for multiple sclerosis.


What Does Testing for Multiple Sclerosis Involve?


The steps involved in MS testing include taking the patient’s medical history. This establishes, first and foremost, whether there are or have been any symptoms worthy of concern over a significant period of time. The next step in the process of testing for multiple sclerosis involves performing a neurological examination. This is the process by which a doctor examines spinal cord and brain function by asking a series of questions, by having the patient perform certain tasks, and by physically examining the patient. If, indeed, it turns out that the patient has neurological symptoms, then this might be an indication that the patient has multiple sclerosis. It might also be an indication that the patient is suffering from some other neurological disorder. This is because the symptoms of multiple sclerosis are indicative of damage to nervous tissue, and many other disorders and situations can provoke nervous tissue damage and, consequently, trigger similar symptoms.

Apart from MS, what are some of the conditions or disorders that can trigger nervous tissue damage and the accompanying neurological symptoms? Lupus is one. Multiple strokes are another. Vitamin B12 deficiency is yet another. So is a brain infection, which, understandably, would result in inflammation of the brain tissue, and actual damage to some of it. Blood vessel inflammation also has the capacity to provoke symptoms of this kind. A patient with any one of these conditions might easily be misunderstood to have multiple sclerosis. In order to avoid such a misdiagnosis, doctors would have to make the effort to do additional tests such as MRI scans, spinal taps, blood sample analysis, or electrical tests on the nervous pathways.


Genetic Testing for Multiple Sclerosis


There is way of determining whether a patient is predisposed towards developing multiple sclerosis, and that is multiple sclerosis genetic testing. Many multiple sclerosis patients have been shown to have a genetic predisposition towards developing the disease. This predisposition is the result of changes on a specific chromosome. However, it is important to note that having this genetic change does not, in and of itself, guarantee that a patient will develop multiple sclerosis. The patient has to also be exposed to certain factors, such as vitamin D deficiency and, possibly, other yet to be determined factors, in order to develop multiple sclerosis. So this is not a definitive form of multiple sclerosis testing.