Study your flashcards anywhere!

Download the official Cram app for free >

  • Shuffle
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Alphabetize
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Front First
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Both Sides
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off
  • Read
    Toggle On
    Toggle Off

How to study your flashcards.

Right/Left arrow keys: Navigate between flashcards.right arrow keyleft arrow key

Up/Down arrow keys: Flip the card between the front and back.down keyup key

H key: Show hint (3rd side).h key

A key: Read text to speech.a key


Play button


Play button




Click to flip

35 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Idiopathic inflammatory autoimmune disorder of the CNS
Pathologically characterized by demyelination and axonal degeneration
Onset may be gradual or abrupt
Multiple Sclerosis
Accounts for approximately 80-85% of MS cases
Characterized by acute exacerbations of worsening neurologic function followed by remission interval; no apparent worsening or progression of the disease
Relapsing Remitting MS (RRMS)
Evolution of RRMS with worsening of neurologic dysfunction without recovery between periods
Secondary Progressive (SPMS)
Characterized by steady worsening of neurologic function from disease onset without distinct exacerbations or periods of remission
Usually associated with greater spinal cord involvement
Primary Progressive MS (PPMS)
Primary Progressive but with occasional exacerbations
Progressive Relapsing MS (PRMS)
What are the symptoms of MS?
Visual Impairment
Painful monocular vision loss (Optic Neuritis)

Lhermitte’s Sign
Electrical sensation down the spine & into the limbs with neck flexion
Numbness, Paresthesias, Pain

Dizziness or vertigo

Fatigue: Physical exhaustion or mental/cognitive slowing

Heat Sensitivity

Urinary Bladder Dysfunction,



Behavioral/Cognitive Manifestations: Social Disinhibition, Dementia or Depression
What are the signs of MS?
Impaired visual acuity or red color perception with optic disc pallor

Afferent pupillary defect,
Disconjugate eye movements


Trigeminal Neuralgia or bilateral facial weakness

Positive Babinski’s Sign



Decreased strength

Decreased perception of pain, vibration or position

Action Tremor
Diagnosis is based on two demyelinating lesions that occur in different parts of the CNS at least three months apart with no other apparent cause

Impulses are delayed due to demyelination

MRI is sensitive in detecting plaques

Plaques usually appear round or oval with finger-shaped projections (Dawson’s fingers) in the white matter of the brain, brainstem, optic nerves and spinal cord
Multiple Sclerosis Diagnoses
More than nine lesions
Lesion enhancement with contrast medium (gadolinium)
Location of lesions: periventricular, corpus callosum, juxtacortical
Involvement of brainstem, cerebellum or corpus callosum
MS lesions seen in the Brain
One or two vertical segments in length
Incomplete cross-sectional involvement
Less likely to enhance with contrast medium
No cord swelling
Better seen with short tau inversion recovery (STIR) MRI sequences
Imaging of the spinal cord in MS
What is involved with the CSF analysis of a patient with MS?
CSF IgG concentration elevated in comparison to other CSF proteins in the majority of MS patients
Oligoclonal IgG bands are identified on CSF gel electrophoresis
What is Evoked Potential Testing in MS?
Used to detect clinically silent lesions of the visual, auditory and somatosensory pathways
Visual evoked potentials are the most sensitive
Naturally occurring cytokines with immunomodulating and antiviral activities

Recommended as first line treatment for relapsing-remitting MS & for patients who can’t tolerate Glatiramer (Copaxone)
IM Interferon beta-1a (Avonex)
SC Interferon beta-1a (Rebif)
SC Interferon beta-1b (Betaseron, Extavia)
Beta Interferons
Mix of amino acids that mimics myelin protein
Recommended as first line treatment for relapsing-remitting MS & for patients who can’t tolerate beta interferons
Glatiramer (Copaxone)
Chemotherapeutic agent
Recommended for use in patients with worsening forms of MS or in patients that have failed immunomodulatory drug therapy as well as secondary progressive MS
Black Box Warning: Toxicity leading to Cardiomyopathy
Mitoxantrone (Novantrone)
MS Therapy

Monoclonal antibody
Block Box Warning: Potential for OIs
Generally recommended for patients who have inadequate response to other treatments
Associated with increase risk of Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy (PML)
Natalizumab (Tysabri)
Mainstay of treatment for symptomatic relapses of MS (acute exacerbations)
Shorten the duration of an acute relapse and speeds recovery
IV therapy with methylprednisolone for three to five days followed by PO taper of Prednisone
Adrenal Corticosteroids
This is characterized by progressive degeneration of both upper and lower motor neurons
Upper motor neuron degeneration results in weakness, hyperreflexia, positive Babinski Sign and clonus
Lower motor neuron degeneration results in weakness, muscle atrophy and fasciculations
Bulbar muscles may be affected
Lower motor neuron disease only
Clinical course usually indistinguishable from classic ALS
Progressive Spinal Muscular Atrophy
Upper motor neuron disease only
Survival typically longer than classic ALS
Primary Lateral Sclerosis
Disease limited to the bulbar muscles
Most patients evolve to classic ALS
Primary Bulbar Palsy
Pathology is marked by loss of motor neurons with astrocytic gliosis
Fibrosis astrocytes cause the affected anterior and lateral spinal cord columns to become hard
Peripheral nerves show secondary degeneration of myelin and axons
Pathologic Features of ALS
The classic presentation of this is progressive asymmetric muscle weakness and atrophy with fasciculations and hyperreflexia
Presentations may include tripping, stumbling, loss of manual dexterity (difficulty picking up small objects or buttoning clothes)
Estimated that 1/3 of motor neurons are destroyed before atrophy becomes apparent
Bulbar symptoms present initially in approximately 25% of cases
Presentations may include slurred speech, hoarseness, decreased volume of speech
Drooling may occur
The following show what kind of dysfunction in ALS?

Positive Babinski Sign
Upper Motor Neuron Dysfunction
The following show what kind of dysfunction in ALS?

Asymmetric Limb Weakness
Foot Drop
Muscle Atrophy
Muscle Cramps
Breathing Difficulties
Lower Motor Neuron Dysfunction
In ALS this may present as difficulty swallowing, chewing, coughing, dysarthria, hyperactive gag reflex
Bulbar involvement
Each of the following must be present:
Lower motor neuron signs in two or more limbs
Upper motor neuron signs in at least one region (bulbar, cervical or lumbrosacral)
Progression of the disease by increasing symptomatic impairment per patient history

All of the following must be absent:
Sensory signs
Neurogenic sphincter abnormalities
Clinically evident CNS disease or peripheral nervous system disease
El Escorial Diagnostic Criteria
This is traditionally used to exclude other diagnoses in ALS?
This should be performed whenever bulbar disease and UMN signs are present
Brain MRI
These can be used to evaluate LMN signs in ALS?
Cervical and lumbrosacral MRIs
This drug has been shown to extend life expectancy by 2-3 months in ALS patients.
Riluzole 50mg twice a day has been shown to extend life expectancy by 2-3 months
This may be required for an ALS patient as the disease progresses?
Mechanical Ventilation
These two drugs can be used to treat spasticity in ALS?
Baclofen, Diazepam
This drug may help relieve fasciculations in ALS?
These two drugs may help relieve drooling associated with ALS?
Atropine, Scopolamine