Neurorehabil Neural Repair 2002 Sep;16(3):223-31
Fairview Multiple Sclerosis Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55454, USA.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease with a wide-ranging impact on physical functioning.
Although pharmacotherapy plays an indispensable role in the management of MS symptoms, optimal disease management requires a multidisciplinary approach that combines medication, rehabilitation, and patient education.
Successful control of symptoms is critical to quality of life for MS patients.
Immunomodulating drugs provide a means of controlling the underlying disease process, but they are not a cure.
This places responsibility on health care providers to control a patient's MS-related symptoms to limit disability and delay impairment in the activities of daily living.
Owing to the importance of symptom control, comprehensive patient evaluations should be performed at regular intervals to determine the extent of neurological damage and disease progression and to address changing patient needs.
The goal of interventions should be not only to treat the primary and secondary symptoms of MS but also to provide access to the psychosocial support that will help MS patients and their families continue to cope as disease status changes.