Relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) is defined by repeated attacks of inflammation and flare-ups in patients already diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The myelin sheath covering neurons in the CNS is attacked by auto-reactive immune cells, which induce massive inflammatory pathways, leading to a varied range of symptoms in patients. However, every attack is targeted at a different spot and symptoms vary in each individual. In MRI scans, it is often seen that patients with RRMS have a greater number of plaques or scars, which are patches of inflammatory cells in a cluster.
Treatment of RRMS
Treating relapsing and remitting forms of multiple sclerosis is a combination of cognitive and behavioral therapies, physiotherapy, lifestyle changes and medication. Several pharmaceutical companies have been working on their clinical development plans for the formulation of novel therapies for treatment of this condition. Of the available medications, six are injectable:
Three are oral:
Three are infused:
Some corticosteroids are also administered in case of relapses, including:
- methylprednisolone (Solu-Medrol)
- dexamethasone (Decadron)
Cognitive and Behavioral Therapies for RRMS
As far as cognitive and behavioral therapies for RRMS are concerned, several studies have compared the effectiveness of cognitive and behavioral therapy programs as compared to emotional therapy, and it showed the former to be more effective in reducing disability, fatigue and depression. This is a form of physiotherapy that deals with cases of anxiety and depression, both of which are consequences of MS. It can be delivered either in groups, via computers or via telephones by experts.
Rehabilitation specialists can advise patients to lead a normal life despite being affected by RRMS, with emotional support and lifestyle changes adhering to the patients’ treatment regime. Physiotherapy, involving human function and movements to use an individual’s potential to the maximum despite any debilitating conditions, is also another effective way to promote a healthy lifestyle and reduce disability rates and to restore the patient’s physical and physiological well being. It is an effective option in order to manage stiffness, balance, spasticity and spasms — the main consequences of relapses.
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.