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Multiple Sclerosis Detection and Diagnosis

Multiple Sclerosis Detection and Diagnosis

Our immune system can be likened to a formidable fortress. Its main function is to protect our body from infections. One could say, a healthy body is the work of art of a healthy immune system.

Multiple Sclerosis plays spoilsport here. And corrupts the immune system in a manner that makes it attack the body’s own tissues. The disease has no known causes and triggers.

So, how can it be diagnosed? Based on the symptoms you experience, your doctor may ask for a variety of tests before they confirm a multiple sclerosis diagnosis.

Through this blog, we’ll help you understand what you can expect during the diagnosis process for multiple sclerosis.

Understanding Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a progressive inflammatory condition of the central nervous system (CNS). As an autoimmune demyelinating disease, it causes the immune system to mistakenly attack healthy tissues — in this case, the myelin or protective covering around nerve fibres. This results in scarred tissues or lesions in multiple areas that disrupt electrical impulses throughout the body. Any damage to the myelin sheath causes nerve impulses to slow down or even stop, leading to neurological problems.

Early detection can help manage the symptoms of MS and slow down its progression. This, in turn, maximises the patient’s functionality and improves their quality of life.

Read more about how MS affects the immune system here.

Early signs of Multiple Sclerosis

An MS diagnosis is generally made between the ages of 20 and 40. The early signs and symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis are often vague and unnoticeable. It is advisable to get a check-up if you experience two or more of the following symptoms:

  • Muscle weakness/spasms
  • Tingling or numbness in the limbs
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of balance
  • Blurry vision
  • Slurred speech
  • Eye pain that exacerbates with movement
  • Osteoporosis
  • Dysesthesia (painful sensations while carrying out everyday tasks)
  • Allodynia (feeling pain when you touch things that wouldn’t ordinarily cause pain)

How to diagnose Multiple Sclerosis

If you have been experiencing any of the above mentioned symptoms, then based on your medical history your doctor will conduct a full physical examination and then run blood tests to eliminate other conditions that could be causing the symptoms. If these blood tests are inconclusive, the doctor may refer you to a neurologist.

In order to arrive at the correct diagnosis, a neurologist will ask for the following:


Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) employs magnetic fields and radio waves to present detailed images of the CNS. It helps in identifying irregularities by assessing the water content in the body’s tissues. Demyelination is one of the classic indicators of MS.

An MRI may also be used to detect other abnormalities that may not have been detected through blood tests.

Evoked Potential (EP) Tests

EP tests map the brain’s response to sensory stimuli, such as sight and sound. The neurologist will place electrodes on the patient’s scalp and monitor the response to minute electrical signals. Most patients with early-stage MS demonstrate reduced transmission across the body’s neural pathways This can lead to ocular disorders such as blurry or double vision. Thus, EP tests help arrive at a conclusive diagnosis while also detecting other problems that may account for impaired vision.

Lumbar Puncture

Also known as a spinal tap, lumbar puncture involves collecting a sample of the patient’s cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) for testing. Neurologists will test the sample for indicators of MS, such as an elevated white blood cells (WBC) count, an elevated Immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody count, or the presence of oligoclonal bands (proteins). These indicators can also be used to identify other diseases that may be the culprit.

Did you know? Parkinson’s and Multiple Sclerosis share many common symptoms. Take a look at this blog to know more. Click here

In conclusion, diagnosing Multiple Sclerosis can be a time-consuming and mentally taxing process, especially when there is much at stake. Knowing what to expect can make things easier, as can reaching out to friends or a support group. It is important to commence the diagnosis process as soon as possible so that you can gain the benefit of early treatment.

If you or a loved one is exhibiting any of the above mentioned symptoms, reach out to Plexus Neuro and Stem Cell Research Centre. Our multiple sclerosis rehabilitation programme comprises stem cell therapy, physiotherapy,, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, and cognitive rehabilitation therapy.

Book an appointment with us today.

WhatsApp +91 89048 42087

Call +91 78159 64668 (Hyderabad) | +91 82299 99888 (Bangalore)

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