Click or tap different areas of the image to learn more about common symptoms.
Bladder dysfunctionIncreased urinary frequency, urgency, dribbling, hesitancy, or incontinence.Read More
Bowel dysfunctionConstipation, diarrhea, or bowel incontinence.Read More
Breathing problemsProgressive weakening of chest muscles which control breathing; Pneumonia infections.Read More
Cognitive dysfunctionDifficulty with memory, attention, or problem-solving; Impaired judgment or ability to make decisions.Read More
DizzinessSensation of light-headedness or spinning.Read More
Emotional changesMood swings, depression, stress, or anxiety; Uncontrolled laughing or crying.Read More
FatigueFeeling of overwhelming tiredness which can be severe and debilitating.Read More
Lhermitte’s signElectrical sensation which travels down back and into the limbs when head is flexed forward, may only cause mild tingling in limbs.
NumbnessLoss of sensation in any area of body.Read More
- Paresthesia: tingling or pins and needles
- Somatic pain
- Headache (may be comorbid with MS)
- Trigeminal neuralgia: pain in the nerves of the face
Paroxysmal symptomsParoxysmal symptoms, involving unusual sensations or muscular contractions, are relatively unique to MS and are sometimes confused for seizures that occur with epilepsy. However, MS-related paroxysmal symptoms, unlike epileptic seizures, do not result from a short-circuiting of brain waves and do not have the features typical of seizures in brain wave studies.Read More
SeizuresBrief episodes of unconsciousness and abnormal movements. Not the same as Paroxysmal symptoms: brief episodes of spasms, pain, or blurred vision (Uhthoff’s syndrome)
Sexual dysfunctionIn males: impaired genital sensation, decreased sexual drive, erectile dysfunction, delayed ejaculation, or decreased force of ejaculation.Read More
In females: impaired genital sensation, including pain, numbness, or itching, decreased sexual drive and/or lubrication, diminished orgasmic response, or weakness in vaginal muscles
SpasticityExtreme stiffness, loss of elasticity of arm and leg muscles; Muscle spasms causing pain and limiting function.Read More
Speech disordersDysarthria or slurred speech.Read More
Swallowing difficultyDysphagia or difficulty swallowingRead More
TremorOscillating movement of arms, head, neck, or trunk; Tremors can also affect the vocal cords.Read More
VertigoSensation of light-headedness or spinningRead More
Vision problemsRead More
- Optic neuritis: an inflammation of optic nerve causing reduced vision or blindness, often sudden
- Double vision or diplopia
- Reduced contrast sensitivity
- Internuclear ophthalmoplegia or INO, resulting in blurred vision
Walking difficultyProblems with gait, balance, coordination, and weakness.
- Paraplegia: weakness in both legs
- Possible weakness in legs, arms, hands, hip flexors, shins, or other muscle groups
Written by: Jonathan Simmons | Last reviewed: May 2015.