Unusual Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms

The HealthCentral Editorial Team | Aug 2nd 2013 Apr 5th 2017

1 of 6
1 of 6

Tremors

Experts say 25  to 60 percent of MS patients experience tremors. These tremors often affect a limb, but some patients have also reported them in the head, torso, and even the vocal cords. Researchers say this symptom is often accompanied by problems with speech or swallowing, since the same nerves govern all of these activities in the body and damage to them can lead to many of these issues.

2 of 6

Itching

A type of itching known as dysesthetic itching is sometimes seen in people with MS. This symptom is caused by damage to the nerves in the skin or the nerves that send signals to the skin. This damage makes the skin react with an itching sensation, even if there’s no physical cause for it. People who have dysesthetic itching should talk to their health care provider, since there are now medications approved to treat this problem.

3 of 6

Hearing loss

Around 5  to 6 percent of people with MS will experience hearing loss due to disease activity in the auditory nerve. But experts with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society say that because this symptom is so rare, MS patients who are experiencing hearing loss should see a hearing specialist to see if other factors could be causing the issue.

4 of 6

The “MS hug”

Some MS patients experience a tight, painful sensation around the stomach or torso that is commonly called the “MS hug.” This symptom is a type of neuropathic pain triggered by a lesion on the spinal cord that causes the tiny muscles between the ribs to go into spasms. Some people say the pain causes them to have difficulty breathing, while others reported the discomfort was severe enough to make them believe they were having a heart attack.

5 of 6

Eye pain

Damage to the sensory nerves between the brain and one or both eyes can lead to severe eye pain in people with MS. This pain, known as optic neuritis, may get better or worse over the course of the progression of MS, and it is often of the first symptoms people with MS experience. People who experience any pain in their eyes should have this problem checked out immediately by a health care provider.

6 of 6

Trouble swallowing

An unusual but serious problem that can come with MS is difficulty with swallowing. Like the other atypical symptoms, this issue is caused by damage to the nerves that control this action in the body. People with MS who suffer from this symptom may cough or choke on food or liquids. This can be dangerous because doing so can lead to pneumonia and other lung infections.

NEXT: 10 Things You Need to Know About MS and Exercise
More on this topic

Reducing Falls With MS

Lisa Emrich

7 Stages of Grief After an MS Diagnosis

Eileen Bailey

How Drinking Coffee Could Reduce MS Risk

Lisa Emrich

Who is Your MS Hero?

Lisa Emrich

What Does Intimacy Mean to You with MS?

Lisa Emrich

Is There Such a Thing as a Diet for MS?

Lisa Emrich

Laughing or Crying For No Reason? It may be your MS

Merely Me

Parenting with MS

Amy Gurowitz

Top 50 Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis

Lisa Emrich

Invisible MS Symptoms

Lisa Emrich

Guided Imagery May Reduce Depression and Fatigue in MS

Lisa Emrich

6 Real Life Issues that Affect Your Life with MS

Lisa Emrich

Five Hidden Symptoms of MS

Lisa Emrich

10 Lessons I've Learned Since Being Diagnosed with MS

Lisa Emrich

Traveling Abroad with Multiple Sclerosis

Amy Gurowitz

Which Type of Exercise is Better for People with MS?

Lisa Emrich

What Causes MS to Relapse?

Lisa Emrich

How to Combat MS Fatigue

Lisa Emrich

Healthy Relationships Despite MS

Lisa Emrich

What is the MS Hug?

Lisa Emrich

What Is Spinal MS?

Lisa Emrich

What is the Hoffmann Reflex?

Lisa Emrich

MS Signs vs. Symptoms: The Babinski Sign

Lisa Emrich

MS Signs vs. Symptoms: What is L'Hermitte's Sign?

Lisa Emrich

The MS Personality: Fact or Fiction?

Merely Me

The Neurological Exam: What do they do?

Merely Me

How to Manage MS Fatigue

JHo

7 Stretches and Exercises to Improve Balance with MS

JHo

12 Tips for Cooking with MS

CRegal

Seven Common Relapsing-Remitting MS Symptoms

JHo

8 Ways to Reduce Stress with MS

Lisa Emrich

Top 10 Common Myths about MS

Lisa Emrich

What to Tell Your Doctor About Your MS

Lisa Emrich

6 Steps to Take If You Suspect MS

CRegal

6 Ways to Improve Sleep with MS

JHo