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Multiple Sclerosis Message Board

Multiple Sclerosis Board Index


You can have MS early on without any noticeable lesions. If a non-specialist who has little if any experience with MSers reads an MRI image, lesions can often be overlooked or simply missed or dismissed. If you have images, there is nothing wrong with asking that the images be reviewed by an MS Specialist.

If symptoms persist, in 2-6 months lesions might become more visible. Nowadays the MRI will (should) be administered with and without contrast. The initial image is without contrast and the follow-up images are with contrast. If you have active lesions, the contrast solution will "light up" these lesions.

Lesion location can be related to a specific symptom, BUT it really is difficult to be able to make that assumption. It would become increasingly difficult once you have several hundred lesions! (You can call me "swiss cheese! :) )
The only time the assumption has been mad for me was when I developed bad gait and leg pains. There were no active lesions found until the VEP (visual evoked potential) results indicated that there were problems. The doctor added my t-spine to the MRI and active lesions were found on my t-spine.

At a minimum, your initial MRI for MS should include your brain and c-spine because that is the area most likely for lesions to develop.

Twitching, is common- for me- but to say common for MSers as a general rule- NO. MS is really an individualized disease. There is no set pattern or checklist for how MS can affect a person. Some MSers might be disabled early while others can go their entire life with only a few minor complaints.

It is difficult to know if a symptom is caused by a lesion or by a subset of MS. That is, anxiety, while a standalone disease, can also be a subset of MS. The MS caused anxiety could in turn cause symptoms. anxiety as a standalone disease also mimics MS. Maintaining a symptom journal helps, I think.

Once you are diagnosed with MS, you will start to learn when something is MS or not MS. Again, this is where a symptom journal can help. As I started my journey and new symptoms presented, I would ask about them and my neuro would review them check me and then advise if it was or was not likely MS. I have found that after a few years, I have a "feeling" about a symptom and I quickly know if it is MS or not. Now, I am still prone to error, but i am getting better! :)

Now, yes, you can have MS without an lesions, BUT you will not be diagnosed until at least two lesions are found. This is the accepted standard for the Revised McDonald Criteria. As long as your doctor applies this standard and runs the requisite tests, you should be able to get answers.


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