When we talk about ‘advanced MS’, we mean MS which severely affects some people after many years. Advanced MS restricts a lot how much you can move around, and you're likely to have lots of MS symptoms at the same time. MS might also affect you in a similar severe way after a very bad relapse.
The ongoing impact of symptoms can mean major changes to everyday life. You'll rely on others for more support.
You, and family and friends that look after you, will need the right care and support. This includes the right services and equipment to help you keep your independence.
You and your loved ones can contact our MS Helpline for emotional support and information about any of the issues on this page.
Symptoms of advanced MS
The symptoms of advanced MS can be similar to those you can get at any stage of MS.
The difference is that you'll get many of these symptoms at the same time. These symptoms won't go away and can be difficult to deal with.
Click the links to read more about these symptoms and how to manage them:
- Pain and unpleasant sensations
- Bladder and bowel problems including incontinence, urinary tract infections and constipation
- Limited mobility and weakness (upper body and legs). Read more in our factsheets on balance and posture and moving well with MS
- Pressure ulcers (also known as pressure sores) which can be caused by being in the same position too long
- Muscle spasms, cramps and stiffness
- People severely affected by MS often find it difficult to chew and swallow food. Find out about swallowing problems.
- Speech problems
- Swallowing issues
- Cognitive problems such as difficulties with memory and thinking
- Depression and emotional problems, including mood swings and uncontrollable emotions