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Multiple Sclerosis

Overview

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a nervous-system disease that affects your brain and spinal cord. It damages the myelin sheath, the material that surrounds and protects your nerve cells. This damage slows down or blocks messages between your brain and your body, leading to the symptoms of MS. They can include

  • Visual disturbances
  • Muscle weakness
  • Trouble with coordination and balance
  • Sensations such as numbness, prickling, or "pins and needles"
  • Thinking and memory problems
No one knows what causes MS. It may be an autoimmune disease, which happens when your body attacks itself. Multiple sclerosis affects women more than men. It often begins between the ages of 20 and 40. Usually, the disease is mild, but some people lose the ability to write, speak or walk. There is no cure for MS, but medicines may slow it down and help control symptoms. Physical and occupational therapy may also help.

Source: MedlinePlus

Note: This topic was prepared to help consumers find reliable health resources on the web. This site is not responsible for the information on other sites. The information here — and on all websites — is not intended to be a substitute for care given to you by a health professional.

Recommended Reading

National Multiple Sclerosis Society
This website is geared to those with multiple sclerosis and those whose loved ones have it. The site includes information about the disease itself; living with the disease and each stage; current research; connections with others affected by MS through an online community; donors and volunteers; news and a multimedia library; government affairs and advocacy; programs and services; events; and more. The site is available in Spanish and provides contact information for the Fort Collins chapter of the National MS Society and a call center in Denver.

Mayo Clinic
This website provides information about multiple sclerosis tests and diagnosis, symptoms, causes, risk factors, complications, lifestyle and home remedies, coping and support. It also has an Expert Answers page for questions about MS and its treatment and symptoms, and links to resources for those with MS.

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke’s website offers pages dedicated to multiple sclerosis, its treatment, prognosis, research, clinical trials, and publications about MS in Spanish. It also provides a comprehensive list of organizations dedicated to MS and/or debilitating disorders including MS.

Multiple Sclerosis Association of America
This website provides a broad range of information, including symptoms, treatment, research, info for newly diagnosed, clinical trials, and information about MS in Spanish.

Local Resources

Colorado-Wyoming Chapter, National Multiple Sclerosis Society
The Colorado-Wyoming Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society provides counseling, peer support, support groups, information and referrals, limited financial assistance, exercise classes, and support groups in Loveland and Fort Collins.

Search for a Healthcare Provider, HealthInfoSource.com
Search this site to find a health professional specializing in multiple sclerosis in the Fort Collins area.

Poudre River Public Library District
Search the library collection for books about multiple sclerosis, or use the library's health, science and technology databases.

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