MS is treated with medication, which is known as disease-modifying therapy or DMT. The purpose of treatment for MS is to slow down the progress of the disease. Treatment is different from symptom management, which deals with effects of MS-related neurological damage on other parts of the body and mind.
There is strong evidence that disease-modifying therapy for MS reduces the number and severity of relapses and slows down the worsening of disability, particularly if initiated early in the course of the disease.
In Saskatchewan, approved DMTs are eligible for exceptional drug status (EDS), which means the cost can be covered by public insurance. Your MS care team is familiar with the process of applying for EDS and will assist you with the application.
DMTs can be quite complicated, and there are many resources to help you learn more. The MS Nurse Educator is located at the MS Clinic in Saskatoon but is available by phone to all residents of Saskatchewan for MS general information and advice about MS drugs. To contact the MS Nurse Educator phone 306-655-8673/ Fax 306-655-8404, or call the MS Drugs Program toll free at 1-866-655-7966 and ask to be connected to Shirley. Email: Shirley.email@example.com
There are currently
few drug therapies that can affect the course of progressive forms of
MS. Non-drug treatment focuses on strengthening people with progressive
MS to withstand the effects of the disease.
Rehabilitation resources are particularly important for helping people with progressive MS to maintain physical function.
Progressive MS often goes along with stiffness or weakness in legs that
starts out causing minor problems with leisure activities or climbing
stairs, but over time can get worse and interfere with basic mobility
and activities of daily living. Starting from the time of diagnosis,
rehabilitation professionals (such as physiatrists, physiotherapists and occupational therapists) can be involved in developing wellness and
conditioning strategies to promote and maintain health, reduce fatigue,
and help you function optimally at home and at work.