• Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month

What to know about MS

It can be mild or severe, nearly undetectable, or affect your ability to see, write, speak, and walk. It is Multiple Sclerosis. With March being Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month, here’s what you need to be aware of when it comes to recognizing symptoms and finding treatment.

Multiple Sclerosis Awareness

Multiple sclerosis, known as MS, is a chronic disease that attacks the body’s central nervous system. It is likely an autoimmune disorder that’s almost completely unpredictable and affects everyone differently. 

With MS, the fatty tissue that surrounds and protects nerve fibers is destroyed in many areas. This loss then forms scar tissue called sclerosis. When the nerves are damaged in this way, they can’t conduct electrical impulses to and from the brain.

There are many possible causes of MS:

  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Infectious agents, such as viruses
  • Environmental factors
  • Genetic factors

What should you look for when it comes to MS

While the symptoms of MS are often unpredictable, some seem to be the most common: 

  • Blurred or double vision
  • Red-green color distortion
  • Pain and loss of vision because of swelling of the optic nerve (optic neuritis)
  • Trouble walking

Other individuals may also experience abnormal pains like numbness, 

prickling, or pins and needles (known as paresthesia). Please keep in mind that multiple sclerosis may only be one possible reason for these types of symptoms, and a proper diagnosis is needed to begin treatment. 

Find answers at UCR Health

If you are experiencing symptoms, or are concerned you might have MS, talk to your doctor right away. While there is no cure (yet) for MS, there are things that can be done to help change the course of the disease, treat flare-ups, manage symptoms, and improve your function and mobility.

Treatments will likely be based on age, overall current health, as well as past health, how sick you feel, how well you can handle certain medicines, and more. Treatments will likely include medicines, canes or walkers (to assist with mobility), and rehabilitation activities. 

As with any disease, it’s important to see your doctor so you can begin managing your MS as soon as possible.

To speak with a UCR Health physician, please visit https://www.ucrhealth.org/make-an-appointment/ or give us a call at 1-844-827-8000.

About UCR Health

UCR Health is comprised of a team of physicians, specialists, and healthcare professionals dedicated to improving people’s health. With five medical offices located throughout the Inland Empire and Coachella Valley, UCR Health is growing to meet the healthcare needs of the region, bringing innovative, culturally sensitive medical care to the community. Established alongside the School of Medicine at the University of California, Riverside, UCR Health’s patient-centered primary care and specialty services deliver university-based healthcare excellence and innovation to all communities.