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Is the UK in MS misdiagnosis crisis?

Is the UK in MS misdiagnosis crisis?
10th May 2012

The UK could be unwittingly costing itself millions of pounds every year through the misdiagnosis of multiple sclerosis (MS).

With the US identifying that their healthcare system is spending a fortune every year on unnecessary treatment for those misdiagnosed with MS, it is time to question whether the UK is in a similar situation.

Researchers at Oregon Health and Science University and the Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Centre surveyed 122 MS specialists nationwide. It was found that more than 95 per cent had misdiagnosed a patient in the past year.

Wrongfully diagnosing MS is worryingly common and causes problems for both the patient and the healthcare system.

Eran Klein, third co-author of the paper, stated that because there is no definitive test for MS identifying it is problematic.

"These diseases instead require well-honed skills of a professionally trained clinician who is knowledgeable about the disease [and] can study a patient's medical history," he said.

Read about Barchester expertise in offering multiple sclerosis support.