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Multiple Sclerosis

What is Multiple Sclerosis?

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disorder affecting the central nervous system. The immune system attacks the nerves of the brain and spinal cord. Body movements may become slow or uncoordinated because signals from the brain to the muscles deteriorate, or arms and legs may feel numb because sensations from the extremities no longer reach the brain. The condition becomes progressively worse over time if not effectively treated. Although there is no cure, medications can help reduce inflammation and lengthen periods between attacks.

How common is Multiple Sclerosis?

There are about 400,000 people in the U.S. living with MS. The condition is typically diagnosed anywhere from age 20 to age 50.

Certain populations have an increased risk of developing MS. Whites are more than twice as likely as other races to develop MS, and women are affected almost twice as often as men. 

Geography and climate may also impact an individual’s MS risk factor. MS is five times more prevalent in the northern United States, Canada, and Europe than in tropical regions.

Questions regarding your Multiple Sclerosis therapy?

You can reach the Accredo MS care team, anytime, day or night, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by phone or online.

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Note: Most messages received via the online contact form will be responded to within one business day of receipt, Monday - Friday (excluding holidays). For urgent matters, please call us for immediate support.



The Basic Facts: The History of MS. Rolak et al. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, 2013; http://www.nationalmssociety.org

NINDS Multiple Sclerosis Information Page. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institutes of Health.  October, 2004. 

Multiple Sclerosis: Hope Through Research. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institutes of Health.  July, 2004.  

Multiple Sclerosis. MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia, U.S. National Library Of Medicine / National Institutes of Health. April, 2004.

Halper J, Holland N. Comprehensive Nursing Care In Multiple Sclerosis, 2nd ed.  Ney York: Demos; 2002.

Dangond, F. Multiple Sclerosis. eMedicine.com. July, 2004.

Capturing and Classifying Functional Status Information in Administrative Databases. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

Bates, B. A Guide to Physical Examination and History Taking, Fifth Edition. Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott Company; 1991.

McCance K, Huether S. Pathophysiology: The Biologic Basis for Diseases in Adults and Children, Fourth Edition. St. Louis: Mosby; 1994.

Lewis S, Collier I. Medical Surgical Nursing: Assessment and Management of Clinical Problems, Third Edition. St. Louis: Mosby; 1992.

About MS: Diagnosing MS. The National MS Society. Accessed 11_25_13.


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