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Avery Long

Dr. Gregg Pennington

Galen College of Nursing


Description of pathology

Multiple Sclerosis mostly referred to as MS. MS can be dissected apart and essentially means many

scar tissues. Multiple means many and sclerosis means scar tissue. MS is an autoimmune disease

that primarily affects the central nervous system. The central nervous system consists of the

brain, spinal cord and optic nerves(2). Just about everything humans do is dependent on how

well the central nervous system functions, from movement of the muscles to though process

throughout the day. MS is a selective progressive inflammatory demyelinating disorder of the

central nervous system. MS has various categories which include: Relapsing-remitting MS

(RRMS), Primary progressive MS (PPMS) and Secondary progressive MS (SPMS). MS is a

disease in which the immune system attacks the protective covering of nerves.

Normal anatomy of major body system effected

The brain and spinal cord includes billions of nerve cells called neurons and glial cells that help

navigate emotions, movement, behavior, touch, and balance (3). Essentially motor and sensory

cellular networking to decipher sensory information and to use motor skills in response to

sensory information. The central nervous system (CNS) is composed of large numbers of

excitable nerve cells and their processes, called neurons, which are supported by tissue called

neuroglia (2). A neuron is made up of a cell body (or soma) with branch-like dendrites (signal

receivers) and a projection called an axon, which conduct the nerve signal to and from the

neuron(book). Myelin wraps around the axon to make signals fire faster in some of these cells.

Much of the CNS uses axons wrapped in myelin. At the other end of the axon, the axon terminals

send the electro-chemical signal across a synapse to go to other cells.

Normal physiology of body system effected


Per Martini & Bartholomew, the CNS integrates and coordinates sensory processing and motor

transmission throughout the body (2). The CNS also helps process memories, intelligence, and

your emotions (3). The spinal cord serves as a conduit for electrical signals between the brain

and the rest of the body. This also controls simple musculoskeletal reflexes without input from

the brain (3). The brain is responsible for integrating most sensory information and coordinating

body function, both consciously and unconsciously. Complex functions such as thinking and

feeling as well as regulation of homeostasis are attributable to various parts of the brain (3).

Mechanism of Pathophysiology

MS is a serious and life-altering disease and can affect patients mentally, physically and

emotionally. The body’s immune system mistakes the myelinated axon neurons in the CNS as a

foreign pathogen and causes it to attack. This then leads to the body destroying the myelin and

the axon in variable degrees. Without myelin these signals are not able to travel to the rest of the

body. MS also produces significant physical disability and emotional stress (6). MS interferes

with the electrical signals between the brain, spinal cord, and other parts of the body resulting the

brain not being able to fire signals throughout the body properly (6). If the brain is unable to send

signals through the body different your body will be compromised in multiple ways. Each time

MS eats at the myelinated axon scientist believe oligodendrocytes then try and repair itself which

results in scar tissue. MS then returns and attack again causing more and more scar tissue, which

causes more physical problems such as muscle spasms, blindness, and immobility (6). According

to WebMD there are four several types of MS, Relapsing-Remitting MS (RRMS), which is the

most common form of multiple sclerosis. People with RRMS have relapse periods, flare-ups or

exacerbations, when new symptoms appear (1). The next form is Secondary-Progressive MS

(SPMS), in which symptoms worsen more steadily over time, with or without the occurrence of

relapses and remissions(4). Another type is Primary-Progressive MS (PPMS), this type of MS is

not common and is characterized by slowly worsening symptoms from the beginning, with no

relapses or remissions (1). Progressive-Relapsing MS (PRMS), PRMS is characterized by a

steadily worsening disease state from the beginning, with acute relapses but no remissions, with

or without recovery (1).


According to WebMD, there are no known ways to prevent Multiple Sclerosis. As with any

disease, diet and things such as not smoking can improve odds. These things also help to keep a

healthy immune system and could prevent disease from occurring.


Although MS cannot be treated it is unique ways to slow down progression. According to

WebMD people with relapsing-remitting MS and secondary progressive MS, treatment with

medicine may reduce the frequency of relapses and delay disability (6). Some different home

remedies help slow progression such as eating a balanced diet, staying active, and staying cool.

Care Plan

According to APRN Nancee Spillman the goal of treatment for multiple sclerosis patient is to

prevent depression. The need to shorten exacerbations and relieve neurologic deficits so that the

patient can resume a normal lifestyle. Help keep the MS patient active, and remain positive can

improve the odds of depression, fatigue, etc.(7).


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory, chronic, degenerative disorder that affects nerves in

the brain and spinal cord. Myelin, the fatty substance that surrounds and insulates nerves and

facilitates the conduction of nerve impulses is the initial target of MS destruction. Signals from

the brain to other cells or organs cannot properly function with damaged axons which cause

different disabilities. Although there is no cure for MS, there are numerous ways to help patients

maintain a comfortable lifestyle, such as: balanced diet, plenty of exercise, keeping cool. Having

open relationships with medical professionals, family, and friends also help cope with MS.


Hooper K. Managing Progressive MS. New York, NY: National Multiple Sclerosis Society;


Martini, F.H. and Bartholomew, E.F. (2017). Essentials of Anatomy and Physiology, 7th edition.

New Jersey: Pearson Education Limited.

PowerPoint Lecture Slides prepared by Betsy C. Brantley & Valencia College The Nervous

System© 2017 Pearson Education, Inc




APRN Nancee Spillman NP at Norton Children’s Hospital Medical Associates