Demyelination (i.e., the destruction or loss of the myelin sheath) results in diverse symptoms determined by the functions of the affected neurons. It disrupts signals between the brain and other parts of the body; symptoms differ from patient to patient, and have different presentations upon clinical observation and in laboratory studies.
Typical symptoms include:
- blurriness in the central visual field that affects only one eye; may be accompanied by pain upon eye movement;
- double vision;
- odd sensation in legs, arms, chest, or face, such as tingling or numbness (neuropathy);
- weakness of arms or legs;
- cognitive disruption including speech impairment and memory loss;
- heat sensitivity (symptoms worsen, reappear upon exposure to heat such as a hot shower);
- loss of dexterity;
- difficulty coordinating movement or balance disorder;
- difficulty controlling bowel movements or urination;
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