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MS Symptoms
Pruritis (itching)


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Pruritis (itching) may occur as a symptom of MS. It is one of the family of abnormal sensations—such as burning, stabbing, or tearing pains, or “pins and needles” feelings—which may be experienced by people with MS.  These sensations are known as dysesthesias, and they are neurologic in origin.


Different from Allergic Itching

Dysesthetic itching may occur suddenly and intensely, but for brief periods. It may be present over any part of the body or face. It is different from the generalized itching that can accompany an allergic reaction as there is no external skin rash or irritation at the site of itching. Corticosteroid ointments applied to the skin are not helpful in relieving this type of itch.


Medications Can Treat Itching Associated with MS

There are, however, several medications that are generally successful in treating dysesthetic itching. Among them are:

·        anticonvulsants, such as carbamazepine (Tegretol®) and diphenylhydantoin (Dilantin®)

·        antidepressants, such as amitriptyline (Elavil®) and the MAO inhibitors

·        an antihistamine, hydroxyzine (Atarax®).


People who experience itching should consult their physician. complements of the NMSS

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