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Know all about MS: Multiple sclerosis
7/7/2015 4:00:00 AM

Typically our immune system works to fight off illness so we either don’t get sick or recover fairly quickly. But when someone has an autoimmune disease the immune system begins to fight itself. An autoimmune disease occurs when your immune system becomes “confused” and instead of attacking unhealthy cells, it begins to go after healthy cells.

Currently there are about 80 different types of autoimmune disease and roughly 50 millions Americans are affected by one – this according to the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA). Some examples of autoimmune diseases are rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease and type 1 diabetes.

Although autoimmune diseases can affect anywhere in the body we’ll be focusing on an autoimmune disease which attacks the nerves. It’s called multiple sclerosis (MS) and those living in North America and Europe are at highest risk for developing it.

What is multiple sclerosis?

causes of parkinsonsMultiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that attacks the nerves which send signals to the brain. The disease specifically attacks the myelin’s health – a fatty material that protects the nerve. When this occurs the nerves become damaged and unfortunately this damage is irreversible.

Essentially because multiple sclerosis affects the nervous system all major functions then become affected. Functions like movement and vision may begin to deteriorate as the disease progresses.

There is currently no cure for multiple sclerosis but treatment may help those affected manage symptoms and slow the illness down

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