Although it is still relatively rare, multiple sclerosis is found in increasing numbers of patients, especially in societies such as in America, the United Kingdom or Australia. Doctors often delay telling their patients what they suspect may be wrong for months, or even years.
There is a generally agreed set of symptoms that show someone has multiple sclerosis in mpst cases. From some simple tests that most doctors can conduct in their own surgery in just a few minutes to brain scans that use advanced computerized imaging equipment the eventual diagnosis can be made with reasonable confidence. This article explains three reasons why doctors do not rush to diagnose this disease, even though a diagnosis should be possible.
1. Doctors are reluctant to tell anyone they are suffering from a big name disease such as multiple sclerosis with no known cure unless they are as sure as possible of their diagnosis. Even with efforts being made all over the world there is not even total agreement about what causes the various sign and symptoms of multiple sclerosis and there are even rare cases of someone being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, and then being un-diagnosed a few years later.There is certainly no single cure that always works for every patient.
2. Individual symptoms of multiple sclerosis can be usually explained by many different causes, so merely to mention the possibility of the disease could be a false alarm. The name “multiple sclerosis” is Latin for “many scars”, with the scars being hidden inside the brain. The individual symptoms normally need to occur in different parts of the body over a period of weeks or months before a definite diagnosis possible.
3. The signs and symptoms of multiple sclerosis are inconsistent for every patient, and come and (usually) go at different times and at different speeds. It is quite common for a patient to delay making an appointment with a specialist (perhaps out of fear of the diagnosis), so that by the time a doctor sees the patient the condition has improved, so both the doctor and the patient are happy to agree that there is nothing to worry about, at least for the time being.
Full test are not often considered if there is any other plausible explanation for the symptoms the patient has reported. This is only to be expected with such an unpredictable disease.