Term: Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

Glossary Definition

Last Updated: 2010-10-22


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a degenerative disease of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). Its effects are diverse and may include problems in balance, vision, communication, memory, and movement, as well as more general symptoms such as pain and fatigue. The course of disease varies between people. Some may have long periods of remission between active episodes, while others may have progression of symptoms from the time of onset, and still others may have an initial period of relapses and remissions followed by a progressive course. MS is treatable through a variety of modalities, with variable impact on the progress of the disease; however, a cure for MS is not yet available.

MS prevalence has been calculated as the number of cases per 100,000 population aged 16 or older. MCHP identified cases of MS meeting the following criteria: at least three hospital visits, three physician visits, or a combination of these, where each visit included a diagnosis code for MS (ICD-9-CM code 340 or ICD-10-CA code G35) within a period of six years.

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