Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PMS)

What is Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PMS)?

Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PMS) is a rare but serious form of Multiple Sclerosis (MS), which is a neurological disorder that affects the central nervous system (CNS). It is caused by damage to the protective covering of nerves and can lead to issues with bodily movement, as well as other neurological symptoms.

Unlike with Relapsing Remitting MS where periods of exacerbation and remission often occur, PMS does not have those periodic remissions. PMS is a progressive condition, meaning symptoms build up over time and cannot be reversed. Generally persons with PMS have more difficulty walking, have increased fatigue, and experience cognitive impairment more than those with Relapsing Remitting MS.

Symptoms of Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PMS)

There is a range of symptoms associated with PMS, however not all are experienced by every person. Common symptoms of PMS include:

  • Spasticity/stiffness of the body, arms or legs
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Heat sensitivity
  • Numbness and tingling of the skin
  • Bladder problems
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Cognitive difficulties such as memory loss and confusion
  • Weakness of the body, arms, or legs
  • Pain and fatigue
  • Tremors or involuntary muscle spasms
  • Vision loss or blurred vision

Treatment of Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PMS)

There is no known cure for PMS, however there are treatments available that can help manage the symptoms. Common treatments involve medications, therapies, and lifestyle modifications. Some medications are used to reduce inflammation; others focus on controlling movements or helping with fatigue. Physical and occupational therapy can help reduce spasticity, strengthen the muscles and prevent falls.

It is important to note that treatments for PMS may take some time to show results and often require continuing care. Additionally, lifestyle adjustments can be beneficial in mild cases of PMS. Examples include regular exercise, adequate sleep, and healthy eating. Working with a doctor or other healthcare professionals can determine which treatment plans are the best fit.