It’s great when you feel better. But feeling well doesn’t always mean your MS isn’t causing damage to your CNS, or that it’s not active. Some of the MS-related damage, or lesions, in your CNS are directly linked to the various symptoms you feel. But there may be lesions present that aren’t resulting in any noticeable symptoms, and these are known as silent lesions.
The occurrence of damage, or lesions, in your CNS is reflected in what is called an MS relapse. A relapse is the appearance of new symptoms or the return of old ones, which then fade away – either partially or completely. They can be as short as 24 hours but can potentially last a couple of weeks or more. If you have relapsing remitting MS (RRMS), an MS relapse will be followed by a period of recovery during which your symptoms will disappear or improve. This period of feeling better is called a remission. Even though your symptoms may have subsided, your MS can still be causing damage to your brain during periods of remission.
In other words, MS can be actively damaging your CNS without you knowing. Only an MRI scan can detect silent lesions in your CNS.
Here are some findings from scientific research:
That’s why it’s really important to talk to your doctor about your brain health, so that you can work together to make sure you’re managing your MS in the best way possible for you.