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Hello, So I find myself in the same place as many of you in here with many symptoms but no diagnosis yet. I’ve been having sensory symptoms since July with pins and needles down my left side, changes in my vision, cold sensations in muscles and pain in parts of my spine. I’ve had an MRI today a seeing the consultant on Thursday to see what it shows. My question to those of you with the knowledge is what could or could it not show?! I understand that it could well be MS but could it show nothing and it still be MS? If it shows something is that it confirmed for sure? I. Confused by the journey that happens after the MRI! The not knowing is very stressful and upsetting and I don’t want to walk into the appointment on Thursday and not be a little prepared for the next ‘unknown’ if that makes sense! Thanks Kate

Hi Kate,

I’m sure that everyone will understand your interest in the diagnostic process but you are getting a little ahead of yourself. What an MRI does not show is a sign that says “MS HERE”. It takes several other tests in conjunction with the MRI to diagnose MS. Even the MRI may need the input of a neuro-radiologist in conjunction with the neurologist to interpret the images correctly. I know mine was.

Other tests are Evoked Potential, Nerve Conduction tests, Blood tests and Lumbar Puncture but this isn’t a definitive list.

The best thing you can do, to prepare for the next appointment, is to take your partner or a friend because it’s most likely that you’ll be bombarded with a lot of jargon and that you’ll come out thinking, “If only I’d asked …”

Whatever happens there’ll be someone here who can answer your questions and help you through the next weeks and months, because it’s very unlikely you’ll get a complete diagnosis very soon and certainly not by this Thursday.

Best wishes,


Hello Kate

I’ve just responded to your post on Jodes thread.

Unfortunately, Anthony is absolutely right. Diagnosis of MS, just as with any disease, is a case of putting together pieces like a jigsaw puzzle.

It’s possible that on Thursday you’ll get a definitive answer about your symptoms and a diagnosis. Maybe of MS, maybe of something else.

But it’s just as likely that you’ll need further investigation.

It’s quite unusual that someone could have no demyelinating lesions on brain scan and still have MS. You’ll need to rely on the neurologist having examined you, discussed your history and symptoms and coupled with MRI be able to tell you whether MS is likely. Or even if MS is definite (it’s possible).

Having spent quite a lot of money to have the appointments and MRI privately, I’m sure you’ll be devastated if the answer is ‘it might be MS, but we need to do a lumbar puncture and Visual Evoked Potentials to know for definite.

In that case, you’ll need to ask for a copy of the MRI scan in order for an NHS neurologist to see the results (and not make you jump through that hoop again).

Anthony is also quite right in saying that another pair of ears and a brain are essential at this appointment if you can manage to get someone you trust to come with you. It’s too easy to walk out forgetting everything that was said.

Good luck on Thursday. Come back and let us know what happens.


Hi, Thank you both for your replies. They have been helpful in helping me understand what I could face on Thursday. My husband is coming with me and I think we will take some questions with us for whatever outcome we get. I will let you know how I get on, Kate

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Hello, Just wanted to come back and say my scan was all clear and the neurologist has ruled out MS. Looking at migrain and FND for answers. Thank you for your advice the other day as it really helped x

Hello, Just wanted to come back and say my scan was all clear and the neurologist has ruled out MS. Looking at migrain and FND for answers. Thank you for your advice the other day as it really helped x


I’m glad your scan was clear and MS is ruled out. For your information, here’s a good introduction to FND:

Best of luck Kate