MS News that Caught My Eye Last Week: MS Misdiagnoses, Mineral Intake Risk Study, Hormonal Changes, Rituximab and Vitamin D

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by Ed Tobias |

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MS Misdiagnosis Too Common, Puts Patients in Unnecessary Peril from Therapies, Study Reveals

Many people who have multiple sclerosis (MS) report that it’s taken doctors years to come up with their diagnoses. So, it’s interesting to read a story about the opposite: those whose MS diagnoses were incorrect. This supports my belief that too many neurologists don’t understand MS and that it’s best to see an MS specialist if you have symptoms that might, or might not, be MS.

Nearly 18% of new multiple sclerosis (MS) patients referred to two specialty clinics in Los Angeles, California, have been misdiagnosed with the disease, according to a recent study.

Most of them actually were affected by migraines, among other conditions, and had been taking MS medications unnecessarily for years, many of which have an associated risk of serious side effects to the brain.

Click here to read the full story.


#AAN2019 — Mineral Intake Not Linked to MS Risk, Study Suggests

People with MS sometimes wonder if something in the environment or a dietary factor caused their disease. This story reports on intake levels of more than half a dozen minerals that appear not to affect the likelihood of developing the disease.

The amount of zinc, iron, and other minerals a person has in his or her diet is not associated with the risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a study.

The study, “Total intake of different minerals and the risk of multiple sclerosis,” was published in the journal Neurology.

Click here to read the full story.


Menstruation Onset, Pregnancies, and Breastfeeding Habits Don’t Influence MS Risk, Study Suggests

This study looked at hormonal changes related to MS. And the good news is that when it comes to impacting MS, it doesn’t seem to matter the age at which a woman has her first menstrual period, whether or not she becomes pregnant, or if she breastfeeds. That research, in turn, may affect their MS treatment decisions.

A woman’s age at her first menstruation, or becoming pregnant and breastfeeding do not substantially influence the long-term risk of multiple sclerosis (MS) or the risk of increased disability, a study of a large number of patients with clinically isolated syndrome (CIS) shows.

Rather, careful clinical exams of women making “reproductive decisions” — like looking for evidence of a second relapse or brain lesions on MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans — and starting appropriate MS treatment early in the disease course was the study’s “main message,” the researchers concluded, providing “useful information for women with MS regarding reproductive counseling.”

Click here to read the full story.


Higher Vitamin D Levels in Rituximab-treated MS Patients Linked to Lower Inflammatory Activity, Study Suggests

I’ve never been treated with rituximab, but I’ve been using vitamin D for many years. Hopefully, what this study indicates is happening for rituximab patients has also been happening for me with my disease-modifying treatments. It seems like a good idea for me to continue taking my “D” each morning.

Rituximab-treated multiple sclerosis (MS) patients who take vitamin D supplements have less inflammatory activity, a study reports.

Increased levels of vitamin D were associated with beneficial treatment outcomes, such as better self-perceived health and reduced levels of the inflammation marker C-reactive protein (CRP).

Click here to read the full story.


Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.


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