Seven Common Relapsing-Remitting MS Symptoms
Jacqueline Ho | Nov 11, 2013 Nov 14, 2016
Reviewed by Amit M. Shelat, DO, MPA, FACP on Aug 26, 2017
Relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) is one of four major types of MS and is the most common. RRMS is marked by relapses that last for 24 hours or longer. Symptoms may become worse during a relapse, but are followed by a remission, when symptoms improve or disappear.
People with RRMS may experience episodes of vision loss in one eye or blurred or double vision, caused by inflammation of the nerves in the eye. Vision loss may increase as RRMS progresses, but complete blindness is rare.
Tingling and numbness sensations
Patients may experience tingling, crawling or burning sensations, which typically begin in the hands or feet and move up through the arms or legs. Sometimes, patients may feel sensations of intense heat or cold or may lose sensation altogether.
Fatigue is both the most common and debilitating symptom of RRMS. Fatigue is often worse in the late afternoon and improves in the early evening. Sometimes, fatigue is accompanied by an increase in body temperature.
Lack of coordination
Maintaining balance and coordination is often a challenge for RRMS patients. They may have difficulty walking normally or trouble grasping small objects. Some patients experience tremors, or shaking or trembling of their limbs.
Difficulty thinking clearly
Cognitive problems, including difficulty concentrating, reasoning and solving problems, affect many people with MS. Patients may have problems with memory, which can create challenges when it comes to the workplace.
Physical changes in the brain or emotional response to stress can contribute to feelings of depression. Less common among patients is manic depression, paranoia and extreme mood swings.
Bowel or bladder problems
People with RRMS often have difficulty controlling their bladder and bowels. They may experience the need to urinate more frequently than others. Sometimes, bladder problems can lead to urinary tract infections.