Multiple sclerosis, or MS, is a chronic neurological disease affecting the central nervous system. There is no cure for this disease, but certain medications are available to help make symptom more manageable and also to help prevent MS ‘attacks’. There are many types of medications available. The first – disease modifying drugs – are used to slow the progression of multiple sclerosis and prevent relapses. Examples include Betaseron, Copaxone, Avonex, and Novantrone.
Secondary drugs are also frequently prescribed to manage the symptoms of MS. These include medications that treat fatigue, muscle stiffness, and even depression. With so many possible medications that need to be taken long term, MS patients need a pharmacy they can rely on to not only have medications in stock, but also to have extensive knowledge about their effects, risks, and interactions.
Did you know…
that 200 people are diagnosed with MS every week? That’s 10,000 people every year. The majority of MS patients are women, though men are affected too. Multiple sclerosis can affect anyone at any age. However, the average onset of symptoms is between 30 and 35 years old. The vast majority of MS patients live in developed countries, with a concentration on Europe, the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, and parts of Australia. No one knows for sure what causes MS, but environmental and genetic factors are believed to play a role.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I use a multiple sclerosis pharmacy?
Yes. You deserve the care and support of a pharmacist that understands multiple sclerosis and the types of treatment necessary to manage the disease. You should feel confident in contacting your pharmacist to get answers to your most pressing questions about MS medications and side effects.
What should I expect from a multiple sclerosis pharmacy?
You can expect an MS pharmacist to be skilled and knowledgeable about drug therapy for multiple sclerosis. Furthermore, an MS pharmacist will always have the medications you need, when you need them. Most will offer helpful advice for dosing and also follow up with you periodically to ensure you are not experiencing any serious or unusual side effects.
Is there anything I should discuss with my pharmacist?
Yes. You should tell your pharmacist about every prescription, supplement, and vitamin you are taking – regardless of whether it is related to your multiple sclerosis. Some medications and other substances are not compatible with MS drugs, and it is up to you, your pharmacist, and your doctors to determine which medications are right for you. Also, tell your pharmacist and doctor if you become pregnant while taking MS medications.