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ALL ABOUT MS Treatment (Part 11)

Treatment of relapse and some symptoms

Routine therapy for acute relapses is an intravenous high dose of corticosteroids, usually methylprednisolone at a dose of 500 to 1000 mg daily for three to five days. The aim of this therapy is to stop the attack as soon as possible in order to keep as little a consequence of this attack. Although generally effective in short-term symptom relief, corticosteroids do not have a significant impact on long-term recovery. In addition, longer therapy with corticosteroids can lead to osteoporosis, high blood pressure, psychotic reactions, convulsions, and cataracts.

Spasticity, which can be manifested as a permanent contraction caused by an increased muscle tone or transient spasm, is usually treated with muscle relaxants and mitralants such as baclofen, tizanidine, diazepam, clonazepam, and dantrolene. Physical therapy and exercises help preserve existing functions, while various aids, such as a walkway, a stick and a prosthesis, serve to keep the patient independent and mobile.

Treatment is strictly individual and requires close cooperation between patients, doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and family members. It consists of physical exercises, physical therapy, use of various mechanical aids, taking medications, and in the most severe cases, blocking of the nerves is also considered.

Avoiding excessive activity and heat are probably the most important measures a patient can take in the fight against bumps. If there are obvious and psychological symptoms of fatigue such as depression or apathy, they can help drugs from the group of antidepressants. Other drugs that can help with fatigue in a number of patients are amantadine (Symmetrel), pemolin (Cylert), and still an experimental drug aminopyridine.

In the case of balancing disorders, most commonly referred to as dizziness and floating, physical therapy and medicines such as dimenhydrinate (Dramamine), diphenhydramine (Dimidryl) and thietylperazine (Torecan) are generally used.

Tremor(tremor) is very difficult to treat and poorly responds to corticosteroid therapy. In the treatment, physical therapy, orthopedic aids are used, and in cases of severe chronic tremor where other measures do not help, surgery. Drugs used in the treatment of tremors are clonazepam (Rivotril), propranolol (Inderal, Propranolol), amantadine (Symmetrel, Amantadine), baclofen (Lioresal) and others, and their taking must be under the control of doctors.

Pain is a symptom that affects some 20-50% of MS patients in some form. Before treatment, it is very important to determine whether the pain is a symptom of MS or has some other cause. Some patients achieve pain relief by alternative therapies such as acupressure, acupuncture and therapeutic massage. Very rarely, pain in patients is so strong that they require specific treatment. In these cases, in addition to drugs from the group of analgesics, drugs from the group of tricyclic antidepressants and anticonvulsants are also given.


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