Multiple Sclerosis is a challenging disease to treat. Symptoms wax and wane and exacerbations and remissions occur in an irregular and sometimes confusing way. Understanding the level of your disability is a key to managing it effectively. Functional Systems Scores (FSS) and The Kurtzke Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) are used to evaluate and assess MS. Together, they indicate how best to approach and treat the condition.
The Functional Systems Scores (FSS) and Expanded Disability Status Scale is the most widely used assessment tool. It is based primarily on seven functional systems: pyramidal, cerebellar, brainstem, sensory, bowel and bladder, visual and cerebral. A neurologist observes, tests and then rates you on a scale ranging from 0 to 5 or 6, depending on the category. The EDSS clinical scale ranges from 0 (normal) to 10 (death due to MS). The ratings occur in half-point increments. The test typically takes 15 to 30 minutes. It's critical to take your assessment and any information you have about your condition to your doctor and discuss it thoroughly.