Recently in the news, 26-year-old Jack Osbourne, son of Ozzy and Sharon, announced that he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). While some might think that being diagnosed with MS at 26 is a bit young, the truth is that MS is the most common chronic neurodegenerative disease affecting young people. The peak time a person is diagnosed with MS is between 20 and 30 years of age, affecting women more often than men.
While the cause of MS is unknown, it is believed to be an autoimmune disease. Studies suggest that early treatment at onset can change the course of this disease, allowing for better outcomes later in life. While there is no cure for MS, there are treatments available including injectable medications, a monthly intravenous treatment or a pill that can be taken orally. Within a year, we are hopeful that two more oral medications may be approved.
For more information about the diagnosis and treatment of MS, please go to the Multiple Sclerosis Center at the Cushing Neuroscience Institute.