People who are in the process of being tested for multiple sclerosis often have many questions. Some of the most common questions surround the subjects of MRIs and lesions. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a powerful tool used to help diagnosis MS as well as measure disease progression. Lesions are the scars caused by demyelination which can be detected by MRI scan.
There have been many occasions where
people in the process of being diagnosed with MS ask whether it is
possible to have MS and not have brain lesions. The short answer is an
When I first experienced blinding optic
neuritis in 2000, the neurologist ordered MRI scans of my brain. The
results showed inflammation of the optic nerve, but no detectable
lesions in the brain. Thus I was not diagnosed with MS at that time.
years later, when I was undergoing MRI testing of both my brain and
cervical spine, lesions were seen in my neck. But my brain was still
clear from lesions or atrophy. We only had to wait a few months until
additional lesions showed up in my cervical spine and an official
diagnosis was made.
Eventually the smaller lesions in my
spine grew together to form one large lesion that spanned from the C4 to
C6 vertebras. At the time I switched from my original disease-modifying
therapy (Copaxone) to a totally different treatment approach (off-label
Rituxan), I was hoping to avoid developing even larger lesions in my
spine as I was definitely experiencing increased symptoms and relapses.
I had been on Rituxan for a year, my MRI report indicated stability in
lesion load, meaning that I had not developed any new or larger lesions.
Follow-up scans two years later were stable, without evidence of new or
worsening lesions, once again.
Another two years have
past and I’ve just recently undergone MRI exam to determine two things:
1) How is my MS is doing? and 2) Is my current treatment continuing to
be effective? What follows are the radiologist’s reports following the
Read this post in its entirety:
Living with MS: No Evidence of Demyelination