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Common Symptoms of MS continued...

Muscle spasms: They usually affect the leg muscles. For about 40% of people they are an early symptom of MS. In progressive MS, muscle spasms affect about 6 in 10 people. You might feel mild stiffness or strong, painful muscle spasms.

Sexual trouble: These include vaginal dryness in women and erection problems in men. Both men and women may be less responsive to touch, have a lower sex drive, or have trouble reaching orgasm.

Speech problems: Sometimes MS can cause people to pause a long time in between words and have slurred or nasal speech. Some people also develop swallowing problems in more advanced stages of MS.

Thinking problems: About half of people with MS have trouble concentrating that comes and goes. For most, this means slowed thinking, poor attention, or fuzzy memory. Rarely, people can have severe problems that make it hard to do daily tasks. MS usually does not change your intellect and ability to read and understand conversation.

Tremors: About half of people with MS have tremors. They can be minor shakes or make it hard to do everyday activities.

Vision problems: Problems with your eyes tend to be one of the first symptoms. They usually affect only one eye and go away on their own. Your sight may be blurry, gray, or have a dark spot in the center. You may suddenly have eye pain and temporary vision loss.

Very rarely, people with MS may have breathing problems or seizures.

What Causes MS Symptoms?

Doctors divide the symptoms into three groups: primary, secondary, and tertiary.

Primary symptoms come from damage to the protective sheath around the nerves in your spine or brain. The damage causes scarring, which makes it harder for signals to travel between the brain and the body.

This process can lead to bladder or bowel problems, loss of balance, numbness, paralysis, tingling, tremors, vision problems, or weakness.

Medicine, physical therapy, and other treatments can keep many of these problems under control.

Secondary symptoms follow the main problems of MS. For instance, not being able to empty your bladder can lead to a bladder infection.