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Smoking and Multiple Sclerosis


Multiple Sclerosis: An Introductory Note

Multiple Sclerosis is a specific disorder of the brain and the spinal cord. As an individual falls prey to Multiple Sclerosis, he develops certain bits of toughened tissues in the spinal cord as well as the brain which further induces damage to the myelin sheath responsible for safeguarding the nerves. This leads to shaking of the muscles moreover, Multiple Sclerosis may be responsible for the development of paralysis symptoms.

A recent data reveals that around 350,000 individuals in the US are in the grip of Multiple Sclerosis. Generally, people within the age group of 20 and 50 years are more prone to suffer from Multiple Sclerosis but this disorder has also been detected among the aged and the children.

Factors Responsible For Causing Multiple Sclerosis: A Brief

Multiple Sclerosis is most commonly found to result from specific collective effects of contagious, environmental and genetic factors. Some of the general causes of Multiple Sclerosis are namely,

  • genetic variations
  • environmental factors such as smoking and consistent exposure to toxic substances
  • Stress

However, hormone and diet intake are also thought to be responsible for facilitating Multiple Sclerosis but clinical confirmation is required to establish the association between these two factors and Multiple Sclerosis.

Smoking and Multiple Sclerosis: A Review

Factual details on effects of Smoking on Multiple Sclerosis are provided below:

  • Clinical experiments undertaken to evaluate the relationship between smoking and Multiple Sclerosis have made it apparent that smokers are more at risk of falling prey to Multiple Sclerosis than people who do not smoke.
  • Smoking of cigarettes and other tobacco containing substances worsens Multiple Sclerosis in people who are already afflicted with the disorder.

How Smoking Causes Multiple Sclerosis?

The nicotine present in cigarette smoke is primarily responsible for causing Multiple Sclerosis. When a person smokes, nicotine is released in his brain and this substance is capable of hindering the progress of the communication between the muscles and the nerves and can also affect the overall functioning process of the nerves.

Cigarette smoking is also known to be capable of aggravating Multiple Sclerosis in individuals. However, smoking worsens Multiple Sclerosis by reducing the flow of blood to the brain and also by decreasing the level of oxygen present in the blood.

Treatments of Multiple Sclerosis

The different procedures available for treating Multiple Sclerosis are briefed below:

  • To relieve patients from severe attacks of Multiple Sclerosis, the most common form of treatment is hospitalization. However, when a patient is suddenly assaulted by Multiple Sclerosis and the intensity of the disease begins to worsen, then he is administered stronger dosages of corticosteroids like methylprednisolone. Corticosteroids are given to Multiple Sclerosis patients for a period of 5-6 days and they help in quick recovery from disability caused by the disorder.
  • DMDs or disease modifying drugs are used to lower the onslaught of Multiple Sclerosis.
  • Interferons are given to people suffering from Multiple Sclerosis during early attacks of the disease and they help in lessening the chances of developing Multiple Sclerosis.
  • For the treatment of advanced Multiple Sclerosis, a variety of medications are used and these include Mitoxantrone, Tysabri or Natalizumab et al.

 

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