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Diagnosing MS

Diagnostic criteria, diagnostic algorithm and other tools to facilitate diagnosis

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Overview

Although more tools are available to help today’s clinician make an accurate MS diagnosis, the requirements for diagnosing this complex disease are the same as they have been since Jean-Martin Charcot first described MS in the early 19th century:

The diagnosis of MS requires:

An understanding of these basic requirements is essential in order to reduce the risk of misdiagnosing a person with MS and improperly treating whatever illness or condition the person actually has. The 2017 McDonald criteria provide clinicians with a tool to make accurate and early diagnosis of MS but may also contribute to misdiagnosis (Solomon et al, 2018).

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