Question: I was diagnosed approximately seven years ago by my neurologist with 'primary progressive'. In the years since then in much of my reading I see reference to 'secondary progressive' My question is: Does 'Primary Progressive' evolve into 'Secondary' or are they two separate types?
Answer: This is a good question; the easy answer is that primary and secondary progressive are meant to be different disease types, but this may not be entirely true.
Years ago a bunch of MS experts sat around a table and came up with clinical definitions of MS disease types. The four types agreed upon were relapsing remitting, secondary progressive, primary progressive and progressive relapsing. The reason for defining disease types was as follows:
So this clinical classification scheme was developed and applied to all clinical research studies to characterize patient populations.
What we really need is a way to differentiate disease types based on pathology and mechanism of injury so we can use this information to apply the correct treatment to the correct person.
Hope this helps
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