For people with multiple sclerosis (MS) — as many as 350,000 Americans and an estimated 200 new diagnoses every week — managing the debilitating symptoms can be an arduous process. A range of medications are available to help with the fluctuating neurological symptoms, such as numbness, lack of balance, muscle spasticity, pain and fatigue, that get in the way of everyday life. But even while addressing the symptoms, people with MS should get appropriate care for other health needs.
"MS is not always disabling and very seldom life ending," says Mayo Clinic's Kathryn A. Stolp, M.D., of the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, who specializes in the care of patients with MS. "People with MS can live long, vibrant lives. Their other health needs, beyond MS treatment, should fit into the larger picture of their care."