Essay about Multiple Sclerosis : An Autoimmune Disease

Essay about Multiple Sclerosis : An Autoimmune Disease

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Multiple sclerosis, also known as MS, is one of the humankind’s most mysterious diseases. Multiple sclerosis has the ability to affect nearly 3 million people worldwide. This disease tends to be more common in individuals of northern European descent and women are more than twice as likely to develop multiple sclerosis as men are. Of those 3 million people, most of them are between the ages of 20 and 50 years old. Even though multiple sclerosis is a mystery disease, scientists are working to determine the exact cause and treatment.
Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that involves the different areas of the central nervous system, the brain, and spinal cord. It damages the myelin sheath, the material that surrounds and protects the nerve cell. This damage slows down and blocks messages between the brain and body, leading to the symptoms of Multiple sclerosis. Which includes Visual disturbances, Muscle weakness, and Trouble coordinating balance, sensations such as numbness, prickling, and thinking and memory problems? No one knows the causes of Multiple sclerosis; they think it might be an autoimmune disease, which happens when the body attacks itself. Usually, the disease is mild, but some people lose the ability to write, speak, or walk.
MS is considered an immune-mediated disease. That is, the immune system malfunctions and attacks the CNS. Researchers know that the myelin sheath is directly affected, but they don’t know what triggers the immune system to attack the myelin. Research about which immune cells are responsible for the attack is ongoing. Scientists are seeking to uncover what causes these cells to attack. They’re also searching for methods to control or stop the progression of the disease. Several genes are...


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...ill continue to function in an abnormal way as described above, but the axon remains undamaged. Sometimes after a long period of time, sometimes years, an axon will spontaneously become demyelinated and regain much of the function that had been presumed to be lost for good. The lost myelin can be replaced with scar tissue much like when you cut your hand a scar forms to join the separated areas of skin. This scarification is how Multiple Sclerosis got its name: Multiple - many and Sclerosis - scar forming. Scar tissue can block the formation of new myelin and once axons have become scarified they do not fully regain their former function. The underlying axon can become withered and function lost entirely. Needless to say a withered axon will never function at all again. Continuing our electrical wire analogy, this is rather like snipping the cable with wire cutters.

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