Here is a question recently asked by a patient: "How do you tell apart an MS symptom from maybe just a run of the mill issue? I have been having numbness in my right shoulder blade area for a few months now on and off - MS? Pinched nerve?"
This is a great question and one most MS patients asks themselves on a frequent basis. It is perhaps an easier question to address if you split into two parts. First, is the symptom even important? We all experience odd sensations (eg. a limb falling asleep), muscle twitching or jerking intermittently and these sensations occur more frequently and last longer in people with MS. If the symptom is not worsening and does not create a problem with function there is little reason to do anything other than write it down to remember it and mention it to your MS care provider when you next speak. If on the other hand the symptom is getting progressively worse or creating a specific problem with function or discomfort you should contact your MS care provider. He or she will then need to ask themselves the second question, is this MS related or something else (eg. the pinched nerve in your case)? The answer to this question will determine what if any type of evaluations or treatments are required.
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