Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada

Talking About MS With Your Healthcare Team

In the first couple of years following your diagnosis, you will likely have many questions for your MS healthcare team. As with any appointment with a specialist, time may be limited.

Preparing in advance for the appointment will allow you and your doctor to make the most of your time together. A great way to do this is to keep a health and lifestyle diary. The types of things you may want to keep track of include:

  • New or worsening symptoms including dates and the impact on your daily activities. This may include changes you have noticed in your sleep patterns, bladder or bowel function, cognitive changes (e.g. memory), sexual function or emotional well-being.
  • An up-to-date list of any medications, vitamins and supplements you are taking, including the dosage of each and any side-effects.
  • Any substantial changes you have made to your diet, physical activity levels or lifestyle (e.g. quitting smoking).
  • Any questions you may have.

Some symptoms may be more difficult to talk about than others (for example, depression, bladder issues or changes in sexual function) but if you don’t tell your doctor or nurse what is going on, they may not ask. Many symptoms can be successfully managed.