Smoking may affect multiple sclerosis

by Medindia Content Team on  April 28, 2005 at 11:51 AM General Health News
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Smoking may affect multiple sclerosis
Cigarette smoking was considered to be a risk factor for multiple sclerosis. New study shows that smoking may enhance the neural degeneration more in people suffering from multiple sclerosis.
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In a research done by the scientists of Harvard school of medicine, researchers had been able to associate habitual smoking with rapid progression of the condition of multiple sclerosis. In a study comprising of 201 cases of multiple sclerosis and 1913 control subjects, the researchers had matched the onset of the diseases from the first time diagnosis to the habit of smoking.

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Multiple sclerosis is a chronic neurological disease of the central nervous system. The disease affects the brain and spinal cord and medication till date had only been able to treat the problem symptomatically. In the initial stages of the disease, the patients suffer from the symptoms periodically. This phase is medically termed as relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis. This may last for many years. Over the years, the patient may go into the next phase called secondary progressive multiple sclerosis.

The results showed that there were chances of 3.6 times more of smokers to go into the next phase of secondary progressive multiple sclerosis than in a person who have never smoked.
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