Diagnosing Multiple Sclerosis
How is multiple sclerosis diagnosed?
With today's medicine, there is no definitive test available to diagnose multiple sclerosis. A diagnosis may be made based on:
- Symptoms — including type of symptoms, how often they appear and how long they last
- Medical tests
- Ruling out other conditions
What happens during an exam for MS?
Your doctor will take your medical history and conduct a neurological exam to find out how you are functioning mentally and physically.
Tests you might have:
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – Produces detailed images of the body's organs and structures to show damage caused by MS.
- Evoked potentials – Measures the length of time nerves respond to stimulation.
- Cerebral spinal fluid analysis (also called spinal tap or lumbar puncture) – Examines spinal column fluid to check for abnormalities from MS.
- Blood tests to rule out other causes.