Multiple Sclerosis – MS

What Is Multiple Sclerosis -MS?

Multiple sclerosis -MS- is an autoimmune disease affecting the central nervous system —the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves.  In an autoimmune disease, the body attacks its own healthy tissue when it thinks a foreign substance has entered such as a virus, bacteria, etc. 

With MS the body attacks and destroys a fatty, protective sheath covering all the nerves in the central nervous system called myelin.  When this scarring – also called sclerosis – happens, the nerve impulses coming from the brain to the spinal cord and other areas of the body are disrupted or halted, causing the symptoms of MS. 

What are the symptoms of MS?

MS symptoms vary based on the location of the scar tissue and the extent of scarring to the myelin.  MS symptoms may include:

  • fatigue
  • tingling, pain or numbness – facial pain, painful muscle spasms
  • loss of balance and problems with walking
  • changes in vision – double vision, loss of vision, rapid eye movements
  • depression
  • anxiety
  • impaired thinking, understanding, processing
  • poor muscle coordination, tremors in arms or legs, muscle weakness
  • sexual problems
  • slurred speech, stuttering, trouble chewing or swallowing
  • bladder and bowel problems  – incontinence, constipation, strong and frequent urination urge

Common Types of MS And Treatments

The 4 Types Of MS

  • Relapsing-Remitting MS -RRMS
  • Secondary-Progressive MS -SPMS 
  • Primary-Progressive MS – PPMS
  • Progressive-Relapsing MS -PRMS sometimes called Atypical MS

MS Treatment Options

There are various MS treatment options available today that have been shown to decrease the frequency of relapses and to delay disease progression:

  • Beta interferons 
  • Glatiramer acetate 
  • Fingolimod 
  • Teriflunomide 
  • Dimethyl fumarate 
  • Mitoxantrone 
  • Natalizumab 

Proving Disability For MS Patients? 

The medical listing for MS is medical listing 11.00.  Meeting the MS listing is difficult.  Most people who obtain Social Security disability benefits for MS do so due to symptoms and complications.  As MS progresses, people often experience longer periods of relapse and increased symptomology preventing work.  While many people are able to work with MS for years, after age 50 many MS patients start to see an increase in both the severity and frequency of their symptoms.  Chronic, severe fatigue and balance issues often make work for the MS patient impossible for many weeks per year.  Determining when to file for Social Security disability benefits due to MS can be challenging.  If you have MS and are fighting for disability benefits or struggling to determine if you should apply for them, call Chad Brown Law today at 336-962-5373.  We help MS patients navigate the social security disability process frequently, and we would love to help you.