Current and emerging treatment of multiple sclerosis

Am J Manag Care. 2016 Jun;22(6 Suppl):s159-70.


The treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS) falls into 3 categories: treatment of exacerbations, slowing disease progression with disease-modifying therapies (DMTs), and symptomatic therapies. The management of MS is becoming increasingly complex with the development of additional DMTs that, like the older DMTs, reduce the frequency and severity of relapses, and the accumulation of lesions detected by magnetic resonance imaging. Initiating treatment to slow or reverse inflammatory lesion formation early in the course of the disease is advocated as a way to prevent accumulation of disability. Nevertheless, there is a lack of comparative efficacy data and few clinical guidelines to aid healthcare providers in the optimal selection of DMTs. Given that some of the newer agents are associated with potentially serious, but rare, adverse events, careful consideration of the risk-benefit profile is necessary to minimize the risk to patients. This article provides an overview of the existing treatments for MS with an emphasis on DMTs and emerging therapies.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Disability Evaluation*
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy / methods*
  • Male
  • Monitoring, Physiologic / methods
  • Multiple Sclerosis / diagnosis*
  • Multiple Sclerosis / therapy*
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Prognosis
  • Quality of Life*
  • Risk Assessment
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Treatment Outcome