Multiple Sclerosis/MS

What is MS? Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an immune-mediated disease that causes the body’s immune cells to attack the protective covering that surrounds the nerves (myelin sheaths). Without this protective coating, the flow of messages between nerves is disrupted within the brain, as well as the messages between the brain and the rest of the body.

Overview

MS Symptoms

Multiple sclerosis affects women more than men and most commonly begins between the ages of 20 and 40. Doctors aren’t sure of the causes of multiple sclerosis, but most theories point to a virus, a genetic defect or a combination of both.

No two people have the exact same multiple sclerosis symptoms, but there are several signs that are widespread, including:


  • Fatigue
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Weakness
  • Walking problems
  • Vision problems
  • Dizziness
  • Bladder or bowel problems
  • Emotional changes
  • Balance problems

Diagnosing MS

If you have multiple sclerosis symptoms, your doctor will thoroughly evaluate you and may perform a test for MS in order to make a diagnosis. They will also:

  • Work to understand your full medical history
  • Conduct a neurologic exam 
  • Perform other tests, including an MRI and spinal fluid analysis

These evaluation techniques will help your doctor make a multiple sclerosis diagnosis. From there, they’ll work with you to determine the MS treatment approach that’s right for you.

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Treatment for MS

If you’ve had a multiple sclerosis diagnosis, Aurora’s expert neurologists will work with you to determine the best way to slow or stop the destruction of your nerves’ protective coating. The right MS treatment can significantly reduce your symptoms and prevent them from becoming disabling. It is important to treat MS early on. Multiple sclerosis treatment may include:

  • Injectable therapies
  • Oral pills
  • IV or oral steroids
  • Anti-cancer drugs that suppress the immune system 
  • Plasma exchange therapy (plasmapheresis)
Your treatment team will also provide education on managing MS symptoms, recommend lifestyle modifications to enhance health, provide valuable health and community resources, and help alleviate your fears.

Aurora’s Regional Multiple Sclerosis Center

Located at the Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, this is one of the nation's largest MS centers. We believe in comprehensive care that treats the whole patient – your spiritual, physical and emotional needs along with your medical needs. We offer:

  • Nutrition 
  • Exercise planning
  • Physical therapy
  • Counseling for sexual or emotional issues

In addition, we can help you manage MS symptoms like cognitive issues, swallowing and speech issues; bladder or bowel difficulties; spasticity; fatigue; depression; stress; tremors and weakness.

Aurora’s Regional Multiple Sclerosis Center also offers MS support groups, seminars and patient education sessions, which are open to MS patients and their families, as well as the general public.

In addition to our St. Luke’s location, we have a variety of convenient MS care centers throughout Milwaukee, Fond du Lac, Washington, Waukesha, Waushara and Winnebago counties.

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