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J Neurol. 2006 Feb;253 Suppl 1:I3-9.

Autonomic dysfunction in multiple sclerosis.

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  • 1Dept. of Neurology, HELIOS Klinikum Wuppertal, Heusnerstr. 40, 42283, Wuppertal, Germany.


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most frequent chronic neurological disease affecting young persons in developed countries. MS is, however, considered as a secondary cause, of central origin, for autonomic dysfunction. The most common autonomic symptoms in MS are disorders of micturation, impotence, sudomotor and gastrointestinal disturbances, orthostatic intolerance as well as sleep disorders. The majority of the patients suffer at some period of the disease from lower urinary tract symptoms and sexual dysfunction. Awareness and treatment of these conditions is vital to improving health and quality of life in patients with MS. The increased understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms in autonomic dysfunction in MS, along with technological and pharmaceutical developments has advanced our ability to treat the multiple aspects complicating autonomic failure in MS.

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