Show Summary Details
Page of

Multiple sclerosis 

Multiple sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis

Alasdair Coles

and Alastair Compston

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 05 May 2021

The papers in this chapter illustrate the picture that has emerged of multiple sclerosis as an inflammatory disorder of the central nervous system, caused by a complex interplay of multiple genetic susceptibility alleles and unknown environmental triggers. Multiple sclerosis is a disease in which there is first demyelination of nerves, followed by axonal degeneration. Demyelination is caused by inflammation, as shown by the synthesis of immunoglobulins within the CNS, and magnetic resonance imaging has shown that only the minority of inflammatory lesions cause symptoms. All of these discoveries were made in the twentieth century, which ended with the first demonstration that a treatment—interferon-beta—could influence the natural history of the disease.

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.