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Friday, May 20, 2016

Mouth Doesn’t Move Like It Should? Tips and tricks for overcoming speech and swallowing problems.

                                                                  

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People with multiple sclerosis, or MS, often have trouble swallowing, a problem called dysphagia. It can also lead to speech problems. It happens when the disease damages the nerves in the brain and spinal cord that make these tasks happen.
For some people, these problems are mild. Others have a harder time dealing with severe symptoms. But treatments and techniques can help you improve your speech and make swallowing easier.

Symptoms of a Swallowing Problem

You might:
  • Cough or choke when you eat
  • Feel like food is lodged in your throat
  • Get a lot of lung infections, like pneumonia, that you can’t explain
When you can’t swallow properly, you might inhale food or liquids into your windpipe instead of getting them down your esophagus and into your stomach. Once in the lungs, they can cause pneumonia or abscesses. You could also be at risk for malnutrition or dehydration because your food and water aren’t getting to your stomach.

Symptoms of Speech Problems

The kinds of speech problems MS causes can vary depending on which part of the brain is damaged. Someone with the disease might have mild trouble with words or severe problems that make it hard for them to speak and be understood. A problem that’s subtle in the beginning might get worse over time.
People with MS usually have a few distinctive language problems:
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How MS Disability Is Measured

                                                                  

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  • Multiple sclerosis progression varies from person to person. And, the various MS types of disease progress in different ways, too. Scans and other multiple sclerosis tests don't always tell the whole story about MS disability; signs and symptoms and how well you are functioning each day -- from seeing to moving to thinking -- are also important measures of how well your central nervous system is working.

That's why a variety of tools are useful in assessing multiple sclerosis disability. These help you and your doctor gauge whether your MS is improving, progressing, or staying about the same. Doctors also use these measures in clinical studies. This helps to see how well multiple sclerosis treatment is working.
A trained examiner, often a neurologist, administers tests that help create scales like the ones below. These can provide a kind of snapshot of your MS progression.

MS Progression: Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS)

This commonly used scale is sometimes called the Kurtzke scale, named for the neurologist who developed it. The EDSS focuses mainly on your ability to walk. It is a less sensitive measure of other types of multiple sclerosis disability. It takes about 30 minutes to create a score. Then a few minutes are needed to establish the ratings in the EDSS scale.


READ MORE


 





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Baclofen Therapy for Spasticity

                                                                  

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Baclofen (Gablofen, Lioresal) is a medication that treats stiff muscles and spasms, a condition called spasticity, that can happen to people with multiple sclerosis (MS) and other nerve diseases.
Normally, your muscles get electrical signals from your nerves that tell them when to tense and relax. Spasticity happens when these signals become uneven, usually because the nerves have been damaged. This makes muscles tense up or move when you don’t want them to. Baclofen works by restoring the normal signals. It can help you move your muscles more normally.

What Are the Side Effects of Baclofen?

Side effects may include:



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Are You Managing Your MS?

                                                                  

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How Well Are You Managing MS?

Answer a few questions, and you'll get:

  • Treatment options for your type of MS
  • Information about the progression of the disease
  • Tips for dealing with symptoms while still enjoying life
Reviewed by Neil Lava, MD on October 12, 2015
This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information:
© 2016 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.


Information showing above is from WebMD website here





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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Gut Microbiota in Young MS Patients Is Higher in Pro-Inflammatory Bacteria Than Usual, Study Finds

                                                                  

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Children and adolescents with multiple sclerosis (MS) differ from others in the composition of their gut flora, with higher levels of inflammation-causing bacteria and lower levels of anti-inflammatory bacteria, according to a study from  the University of British Columbia, Canada.
The findings, supporting previous hypotheses that the composition of the gut microbial community could influence the development of neurological and autoimmune diseases, were published in the European Journal of Neurology, in a study titled “Gut microbiota in early pediatric multiple sclerosis: a case-control study.
MS is an autoimmune disease known to be caused by both genetic and early life environmental exposures. Previous studies, particularly in animal models, suggested a role for the gut microbiota in MS, leading the authors to further explore this association.
Because adults are exposed to many external environments and to narrow its search for disease triggers, the research team analyzed the gut flora of MS patients under 18 years of age, and within two years of disease onset. In total, 18 young people were invited to participate, half of which were naive for immunomodulatory drugs (IMD).  Their gut microbiota was compared to that of 17 healthy controls of similar ages.
Results revealed that although the general diversity of the gut microbiota did not correlate with MS status, IMD exposure modified the overall diversity of the gut bacteria. The investigators found that MS patients had an enrichment in the relative abundance of the bacterial strain Desulfovibrionaceae, and a depletion in Lachnospiraceae and Ruminococcaceae bacteria, suggesting that MS involves an increase in pro-inflammatory and a decrease in anti-inflammatory gut microbiota.


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UK Clinical Trials Testing Robotic Legs That Might Allow Patients to Walk Hands-Free

                                                                  

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May 17, 2016

The first U.K. clinical trials of robotic legs that might allow people with mobility impairment to move — hands-free — are underway at the University of Kent.

REXsitting


Clinicians and engineers at Kent are carrying out the study in a partnership with the East Kent Hospital’s University Foundation Trust (EKHUFT). Scientists in the School of Engineering and Digital Arts (EDA) will examine the impact such simple freedom has on patients, both physically and mentally, noting that if the trial finds these exoskeletons effective, they have the potential to improve the health of people with paralysis due to a variety of causes, from multiple sclerosis, motor neuron disease, and stroke, to trauma suffered in accidents or war.

Sandy Fleming, with  University of Kent News, notes that increasing numbers of wheelchair users cannot walk at all, and sitting for extended periods places them at risk of complications. Walking assisted by these robotic legs could help diminish these risks, in addition to improving the patient’s independence and quality of life.
Read more



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Monday, May 16, 2016

Slideshow: Causes of Fatigue and Sleepiness and How to Fight Them

                                                                  

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Fighting Fatigue -- Click here    





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Slideshow: A Visual Guide to Multiple Sclerosis and the MS Warning Signs

                                                                  

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Muscle weakness, loss of balance, blurry vision, bladder problems: 

Do any of these symptoms sound familiar?

Click this link to activate an important slideshow:





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Sunday, May 15, 2016

Live and Thrive: Feeling Your Best With MS

                                                                  

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Live and Thrive: Feeling Your Best With MS


MS: Living on Your Terms|



MS: Staying Vital



Click here to see the videos and articles found on this WebMD page




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Which Alternative Treatments Might Help?

                                                                  

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Do These Treatments Work for MS?


Bee stings, cobra venom, and hookworms are things you usually avoid -- unless you have multiple sclerosis
Then, you might be willing to try them to help ease your symptoms. And what if recycling stem cells or going gluten-free could fix your immune system? Would you give it a go?

Let's separate the science from the wishful thinking.
Some lifestyle approaches, such as exercise, have been proven to help with fatiguedepression, memory, and bladder control. Others, such as vitamin D supplements, show promise but are still being tested. Acupuncture, a centuries-old form of Chinese medicine, shows mixed results.

Your best bet is to stick to your treatment plan. Don't stop taking your medication. Talk to your doctor about any complementary medicine or alternative treatment you want to try, especially since it may affect how your drugs work. Together, you can decide if it makes sense and won't do more harm than good.

Stem Cell Therapy (HSCT)

The goal behind a hematopoietic stem cell transplant is to reboot your immune system to stop it from attacking your nervous system.
Researchers take special undeveloped cells from the blood or bone marrow of people with MS, then knock out their immune cells with low doses of chemotherapy and radiation. When the saved stem cells get put back into their bodies, they start making new immune cells that hopefully won't go after myelin and brain tissue.
The results are promising: 41 of the people studied for 2 years said their symptoms were greatly improved. After 4 years, more than half of them had no relapses. That was 80% of those in the study.
Larger, controlled studies and clinical trials are now underway.

Gluten-free Diet

In some people, the protein found in wheat can trigger celiac disease. That's also an autoimmune disorder. But research doesn't show a link between it and MS.
Unless you're sensitive to gluten, don't pass on the pasta and bread just yet. There's no science to suggest giving up these kinds of foods will ease your MS symptoms.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

You may have seen this in movies when scuba divers get "the bends." You sit in a small, sealed chamber breathing pure oxygen. Because the pressure inside is up to three times more than normal air pressure outside, you can breathe more into your lungs. This extra oxygen may help your body heal.
It works as a treatment for carbon monoxide poisoning, bubbles in your bloodstream, burns from fire and heat, and wounds from diabetes and radiation. But not for MS. Several studies found no evidence to support its use and little need for more research.

Continue reading direct from WebMD - topics like bee stings, bee pollen, snake venom and more






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