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Monday, December 2, 2013

Multiple Sclerosis Prognosis and Your Life Expectancy

Written by Robin Madell | Medically Reviewed by George Krucik, MD, MBA

Not Fatal, but No Cure

When it comes to examining the prognosis for multiple sclerosis (MS), there’s some good news and some bad news. Let’s start with the bad news: there is currently no cure for MS. However, there is good news about life expectancy. According to the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation (MSF), MS is not a fatal disease. In fact, those with the condition have essentially the same life expectancy as the general population. 

What’s My Prognosis?

When looking strictly at life expectancy, the prognosis for MS patients is encouraging. The University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) reports that the majority of those with the disease will experience a normal (or almost normal) life span. People with MS tend to die from many of the same conditions that those without MS die from, including cancer and heart disease.

Quality-of-Life Issues

The prognosis for longevity is good except in cases of severe MS, which is quite rare. However, those with the condition must contend with other issues that can hamper their quality of life. MS symptoms can cause pain, discomfort, and inconvenience even though most with the disease will never become severely disabled. For this reason, the UMMC reports that suicide rates among people with MS are higher than those in the general population.
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