Multiple sclerosis is a chronic progressive disease that has an hereditary nature. Multiple sclerosis can begin at any age.
Definition of multiple sclerosis
In multiple sclerosis, the destruction of the myelin sheath of nerve fibers occurs. This membrane, formed by special cells and consisting of lipids, is necessary for high-speed impulse conduction through the nerve fiber. Fibers that do not have a myelin shell carry a nerve impulse much slower.
Myelin fibers are located among various leading structures of the central nervous system and peripheral nerve beams. Therefore, multiple sclerosis is manifested by various neurological symptoms depending on the localization of the centers of demyelination.
Symptoms of multiple sclerosis
The disease most often tends to be repeated remissions: there is an alternation of phases of exacerbation with increased symptomatology and remission phases, during which some of the symptoms weaken or disappear altogether.
Among the first signs and symptoms of multiple sclerosis, the most common are lesions of the motor neural beams that innervate the muscles of the trunk and extremities. Of motor disorders are most often observed paraparesis - weakening of the muscular strength of the limbs of one level: both arms or legs. The most commonly occurring lower paraparesis. Muscle tone is often elevated, but hypotonia also occurs.
A characteristic symptom of multiple sclerosis is damage to the optic nerve - retrobulbar neuritis. In the phase of exacerbation of the disease sharply reduced visual acuity, reduced field of view. Such violations usually last longer than 24 hours, but they are reversible: the vision is almost completely restored to the remission phase.
Emerging disorder of the movements of the eyes is caused by paresis of the corresponding muscles. This feature is manifested by different kinds of strabismus; An image that is apparently ill, has fuzzy contours or is split. Such abnormalities are also reversible in the early stages of the disease.
In connection with the defeat of fibers coming from the cerebellum, there is a disruption of coordination of movements. This may be fuzzy stroke, inconsistency in the volume of motion of the required (excessively widespread motion), increase the amplitude of the tremor of the hand when touching the finger of the tip of the nose (finger-nose test, performed in closed eyes). Perhaps speech abnormal: it becomes scanned.
One of the first signs of multiple sclerosis may be paresis of the facial nerve, which manifests asymmetry of half the person. On the side of the defeat there is marked lowering of the corner of the mouth, smoothing of the skin folds, enlargement of the eye gap. On the affected side it is impossible to wrinkle your forehead, close your eyes, inflate your cheek. Because of one-sided paresis of mimic muscles, the language becomes obscure.
Significant place among the signs of multiple sclerosis occupy mental disorders: minimal changes in cognitive functions appear already in the early stages of the disease. Just as the bulk of the symptoms, cognitive impairment increases during periods of exacerbation. Mental disorders are expressed in the reduction of intelligence, deterioration of memory, weakening of cognitive abilities, drowsiness.
In multiple sclerosis, depressive syndrome is often formed. At the same time, depression is accompanied by a feeling of anxiety and a decrease in motivation, a negative attitude to the environment. In the debut of the disease there may be a disturbance of the function of the pelvic organs.
Patients with multiple sclerosis require frequent rest and during any work, it is difficult for them to repeat the actions. These phenomena are exacerbated with the course of the disease and are known as chronic fatigue syndrome.