Is MS Fatal?

wow…I found this just now when surfing… shocker.

As a group, people with MS have a life expectancy estimated at 6-7 years less than the general population. The vast majority of people with MS die from the same diseases as everyone else–heart disease, cancer, or stroke.

Death caused directly by an MS lesion is extremely unusual. Without adequate medical care, it might result from a lesion in the part of the brain that regulates breathing or from large areas of demyelination that interfere with life-supporting systems in the body. Certain complications of advanced MS, such as severe urinary tract infections, pneumonia, or extensive skin breakdown, can also threaten life and may prove fatal even with adequate treatment. Modern antibiotic therapy and sophisticated supportive care strategies make it possible to control these problems in most cases. Severe untreated depression is also known to be responsible for the relatively high suicide rate among people with MS. The Society is committed to educating our community about the importance of identifying and treating MS-related depression.

The contradiction is apparent but not real: severe MS or its complications may be fatal, but the likelihood is so rare that MS cannot be considered a fatal disease.

COPYRIGHT 2002 National Multiple Sclerosis Society
COPYRIGHT 2002 Gale Group

Contradicting? Yeah..but still scary! :p

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