Some neurologists, many in academic circles, have a perception that MS is predictably associated with disability. Before the advent of new testing procedures, particularly MRI of the brain and spinal cord, many patients were not diagnosed during life. Without proven treatments, there was little incentive to do so in those without disability. The training of many more neurologists in recent years has led to greater availability of neurologic consultation; therefore, a larger proportion of previously undiagnosed patients are now correctly recognized as having MS. Thus, in the past, those who had more evidence of disability than the majority were correctly diagnosed; those who were minimally affected were not. Now that a variety of treatments are available, the importance of early diagnosis and treatment is accepted, and we are seeing a larger number of patients correctly diagnosed as having MS.
In my experience, general physicians previously gave about two thirds of the women who were diagnosed with MS an initial "psychiatric" label. Now, with the advantages of increasing numbers of physicians (neurologists) trained to recognize MS and the general availability of MRI equipment, many more people are recognized as having this disorder. In Europe, where large numbers of patients have been cared for in specialty centers, it is now evident that the majority of these people with MS are not disabled.
Was this article helpful?
This ebook provides an introductory explanation of the workings of the human body, with an effort to draw connections between the body systems and explain their interdependencies. A framework for the book is homeostasis and how the body maintains balance within each system. This is intended as a first introduction to physiology for a college-level course.