Tuesday, November 10, 2009 Affectediniowa, Community Member, asks

Q: Does MS affect your memory, both short and long term?

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Answers (13)
djax59, Community Member
11/12/09 2:40am

when i found out that ms could cause cognitive problems i was very happy. i really wasn't losing my mind. i forget from one moment to the next what i am doing and why. i forget the topic of conversation mid-sentence. my favorite cuss word sometimes triggers a memory-but not always. i figure if it was important it'll come up again. something else to laugh at. djax59

JOHN HARE, Community Member
11/19/09 11:59am

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I was just going to post a comment to the cognitive thread when I saw yours. I Immediately associated with your post. Seeing that it was what was in my head at the time and I better comment before I lost it. I have forgotten what I was going to lose; the comment I was going to write or the reply to you. So I’ll go with a reply, I think. I do a lot of peer support here in Colorado Springs and will be on a real roll answering a question; right in the middle of it I say to myself what the **** am I talking about. My shot it takes at least 4 to 5 trips to get it, thank God for munchies so I don’t fell foolish coming back from frig without shot. Then there is the ‘been there before’ thing like this message, seeming like I have written it to you before. I’m a 33+ year MS’er with the same humor streak as you. If you ever remember what memory that cuss word is flashing back to e-mail me so I can remember also.

djax59, Community Member
11/20/09 6:25pm

it is what ever i'm trying to remember--a lot of times just a word--it will come out--ba bla bla(i'm not any good at spelling sound effects) then a great big oh ****. sometimes that will do it--sometimes not--i just figure if it was imp. it'll come back to me---or not. i come back from the fridge--the other room--or wherever empty handed all the time--you are not alone. chin up-keep laughing--djax59

RITA KESEY, Community Member
11/11/09 10:18pm


david weichbrodt, Community Member
11/22/09 11:20pm

Yes I do repeat myself and ask things more than once.    Long term seems ok but it seems to be the short term that bothers me.    I guess after having this since 1978 it has taken it's toll on that portion of my brain.   

Right hand is somewhat slower than the left and the sensation of touch has given me issues since 1978 learned to adapt to the right hand. Balance is also an issue when you try to do the heel to toe walk.    Yes I get mad at this stuff also, I try to keep on keeping on

Alison P, Community Member
11/19/09 6:48am

Yes, I too agree that MS affecs your memory. I am 46 and was dx with RR/MS in 2004. I am waiting to see my Neuro and I am hoping he will explain if the demylination that is evident on my my MRI scan is anything to do with cognitive problems.


My problem is short term memory. I know family have noticed it. I see it in their face's when I stumble with words...yet again...They don't mention anything though!!



Aspina27, Community Member
11/19/09 7:45am

I believe it definetly affects your memory both short and long term. there are games and exercises to help with this and I do them constantly.

tweener8292, Community Member
11/19/09 8:10am

Short term.  So far that's been the #1 problem.  My wife and son had been noticing for months that I wasn't remember conversations that we had.  Since my final diagnosis of MS (primary-progressive), I've become the King of Post-it Notes and notebooks to write things down immediately to refer to later.  That's helped.


No long-term problems yet.

Sheila, Community Member
11/19/09 9:25am
Yes. Definitely. It was hard dealing with it at first. The long term memory problems are not as acute as the short term. I take care of something and someone will ask me ten minutes later, did you take care of it and I have to seriously think about whether I did or not. Taking notes and writing everything down helps. Reply
Sheila, Community Member
11/19/09 9:27am
Definitely. Short term is worse than long term. I can't remember fifteen minutes ago but I can remember when I was a young girl. Exacerbations come and go and the memory gets worse and better at will. They have cut down my responsibilities at work - no one trusts me to remember anything properly. Reply
KYBlu, Community Member
11/19/09 11:19am

My memory is most definitely affected. Some days are worse than others. I make a lot of lists. Mostly my short term memory seems to be affected.

Donna, Community Member
11/19/09 12:23pm

MS affects my cognitive and short term memory, I am 41. I am a Medical Technologist and it is especially embarrassing and frustrating when I am trying to talk to a doctor/co-worker and I don't remember the words I want to say. Did I say, my short term memory sucks? My long term is just fine though!! Before I found out about my cognitive dysfunction, I thought I was going crazy. I was on copaxone for a few years, my body had gotten used to it, therefore not working anymore. They put me on Tysabri and did another MRI. I now have secondary progressive MS.


happyJQ, Community Member
11/19/09 8:47pm

It sure does. It's worse when the fatigue is worse - they go hand in hand. But I've learned to use coping strategies - notes, reminders on my email calendar & my phone calendar and a calendar on the fridge. I use the alarm on my phone to help me remember appointments & stuff. I make a personalized calendar every year with everyone's birthdays & anniversarys on it - and the website I order it from even saves the info from year to year to make it even easier. The last two years, I've given these out (complete with photos I've taken throughout the year) for Christmas & they are a BIG hit! Everyone loves them and it's an easy way to manage Christmas shopping. One stop - delivered right to my door. Smile

vldnyc, Community Member
11/22/09 9:37am

Most definitely!  Mostly my short-term memory is affected. For example, if I watched a movie a couple of days ago, I am not able to remember what the movie was about or even its name. Sometimes I watch a movie I have already seen with no recognition. I easily get confused which affects memory.


I  have a lot of cognitive issues, memory being an important one.

Sherry, Community Member
12/ 1/09 12:56pm


Yes, it absolutly affects my memory.  I have been affected by MS very much.  My memory function has decressed significantly in the last year, I noticed it getting bad before that , but this laast year has really gone down hill.  No amount of list or planners in the world will help me, because, oh thats right, I FORGET to look at the list or the planner.  It hurts me.  I always had a sharpe memory.  I remember my mom, or other memebrs of my family would say to me, "SHerry hwa tis, so and so telelphone number?" and I would just call it off like it was nothing. Now, forget it, I am lucky I remember my own number.  SO yes MS seriuosly affects your memory capabilities.

Gerry, Community Member
5/14/10 3:48pm

Gee, I've had MS for 20 years or atleast was diagnosed with MS 20 years ago. I cant really say my memory, short or long term has been affected. Infact, I'm currently learning to speak and read Gaelic(cant write it, never will.) I am also learning astronomy and have figured out a better way to set my telescope up tht quicker and more accurate. I here these stories and don't understand. I also read on an MS site that learning a new skill helps to slow down and perhaps reduce these losses. From my experience, it works.


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By Affectediniowa, Community Member— Last Modified: 04/15/12, First Published: 11/10/09