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Multiple Sclerosis

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

Important
It is possible that the main title of the report Multiple Sclerosis is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.

Synonyms

  • Demyelinating Disease
  • Disseminated Sclerosis
  • MS
  • Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis
  • Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Multiple sclerosis is a chronic neuroimmunologic (both the nervous system and the immunological system are involved) disorder of the central nervous system involving the brain, spinal chord and optic nerves. By means of a mechanism not clearly understood, the protective fatty, insulating substance called myelin sheath that covers the nerve is destroyed. The inflammatory attacks that produce the characteristic scarring (plaques or patches) of the myelin sheath occur randomly, vary in intensity, and at multiple sites. The course of the disease may advance, relapse, remit, or stabilize. The randomness of the location of plaques or patches affects the nerve's ability to transmit information (neurotransmission) and causes a wide range of neurological symptoms, which may vary from person to person.

Recently it has been learned that the nerve fibers themselves, (axons), in addition to the myelin sheaths, are affected by the neuroimmunologic attacks. Damage to the nerve cells may be irreversible. As a result, clinicians recommend early intervention with one of the disease-modifying agents (see below).

Resources

WE MOVE (Worldwide Education and Awareness for Movement Disorders)
5731 Mosholu Avenue
Bronx, NY 10471
USA
Tel: (347)843-6132
Fax: (718)601-5112
Email: wemove@wemove.org
Internet: http://www.wemove.org

National Multiple Sclerosis Society
1100 New York Avenue NW
Suite 660
Washington, D.C. 20005-3934
USA
Tel: (202)408-1500
Fax: (202)408-0696
Tel: (800)344-4867
Email: David.Chatel@nmss.org
Internet: http://www.nationalmssociety.org

American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association, Inc.
22100 Gratiot Ave.
East Detroit, MI 48021
Tel: (586)776-3900
Fax: (586)776-3903
Tel: (800)598-4668
Email: aarda@aarda.org
Internet: http://www.aarda.org/

NIH/National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
P.O. Box 5801
Bethesda, MD 20824
Tel: (301)496-5751
Fax: (301)402-2186
Tel: (800)352-9424
TDD: (301)468-5981
Email: me20t@nih.gov
Internet: http://www.ninds.nih.gov/

Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers
359 Main Street
Suite A
Hackensack, NJ 07601
Tel: (201)487-1050
Fax: (201)678-2290
Email: info@mscare.org
Internet: http://www.mscare.org

Multiple Sclerosis Association of America
706 Haddonfield Road
Cherry Hill, NJ 08002
USA
Tel: (856)488-4500
Fax: (856)661-9797
Tel: (800)532-7667
Email: ctalbot@msassociation.org
Internet: http://www.msassociation.org/

Multiple Sclerosis International Federation
3rd Floor Skyline House
200 Union Street
London, Intl SE1 0LX
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7620 1911
Fax: +44 (0)20 7620 1922
Email: info@msif.org
Internet: http://www.msif.org

Spastic Paraplegia Foundation
7700 Leesburg Pike, Ste 123
Falls Church, VA 22043
USA
Tel: (877)773-4483
Email: information@sp-foundation.org
Internet: http://sp-foundation.org

Vasculitis of the Central Nervous System
vasculitisoftheCNS@yahoogroups.com
Tel: (770)978-5636
Email: cnsvsurvivor@aol.com
Internet: http://www.VasculitisoftheCNS@yahoogroups.com

MUMS National Parent-to-Parent Network
150 Custer Court
Green Bay, WI 54301-1243
USA
Tel: (920)336-5333
Fax: (920)339-0995
Tel: (877)336-5333
Email: mums@netnet.net
Internet: http://www.netnet.net/mums/

Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation
636 Morris Turnpike, Suite 3A
Short Hills, NJ 07078
USA
Tel: (973)379-2690
Fax: (973)912-9433
Tel: (800)225-0292
Email: prc@ChristopherReeve.org
Internet: http://www.christopherreeve.org

New Horizons Un-Limited, Inc.
811 East Wisconsin Ave
P.O. Box 510034
Milwaukee, WI 53203
USA
Tel: (414)299-0124
Fax: (414)347-1977
Email: horizons@new-horizons.org
Internet: http://www.new-horizons.org

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
TDD: (888)205-3223
Internet: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/GARD/

Madisons Foundation
PO Box 241956
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Tel: (310)264-0826
Fax: (310)264-4766
Email: getinfo@madisonsfoundation.org
Internet: http://www.madisonsfoundation.org

Autoimmune Information Network, Inc
PO Box 4121
Brick, NJ 08723
Fax: (732)543-7285
Email: autoimmunehelp@aol.com

European Society for Immunodeficiencies
1-3 rue de Chantepoulet
Geneva, CH 1211
Switzerland
Tel: +31 73-6992965
Fax: +41 22 906 91 40
Email: esid@kenes.com
Internet: http://www.esid.org

Multiple Sclerosis Foundation
6520 North Andrews Avenue
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33309-2130
Tel: (954)776-6805
Fax: (954)938-8708
Tel: (800)225-6495
Email: admin@msfocus.org
Internet: http://www.msfocus.org

American Association of Neurological Surgeons
5550 Meadowbrook Drive
Rolling Meadows, IL 60008-3852
Tel: (847)378-0500
Fax: (847)378-0600
Tel: (888)566-2267
Email: info@aans.org
Internet: http://www.NeurosurgeryToday.org and http://www.aans.org

AutoImmunity Community
Email: moderator@autoimmunitycommunity.org
Internet: http://www.autoimmunitycommunity.org

PLAN Institute for Caring Citizenship
Suite 260 - 3665 Kingsway
Vancouver
British Columbia, V5R 5W2
Canada
Tel: 604-439-9566
Fax: 604-439-7001
Email: inquiries@planinstitute.ca
Internet: http://www.planinstitute.ca/?q=learnfromus/library

Child Neurology Foundation
2000 West 98th Street
Bloomington, MN 55431
USA
Tel: (952)641-6100
Fax: (952)881-6276
Tel: (877)263-5430
Email: jstone@childneurologyfoundation.org
Internet: http://www.childneurologyfoundation.org

For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site www.rarediseases.org or email orphan@rarediseases.org

Last Updated:  8/8/2007
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