Hi was wondering if someone could clarify what counts as a relapse or new episode? I’ve been ill since April and have so far been diagnosed with CIS but am due to have an MRI scan, VEP and SSEP test within the next 6 weeks by which time they will hopefully know more. My question is that I’ve been ill since April and haven’t fully recovered but have had a new symptom of my right arm not feeling like its connecting properly. I didn’t have any problems with my right side before - it all started on my left. The symptoms that I have been left with since April are the dizziness/vertigo and nerve pain which affects my head, left side of face, neck and left arm. Because this is a new symptom should I speak to the gp about it and also is it classed as a relapse or a new symptom or is it still classes as the same original one? Would be great for some advice. Thanks

I personally would go to GP and tell them about this new symptom… keeps them up to date with everything going on with you.

Hope you feel better soon xx

Hi Karina

I’m not diagnosed so no expert but this to my ears sounds like another episode. If it’s a flare up of new symptoms which have lasted more than 24 hours. I would tell your GP or even better the neuro you’re under.

A flare up of an old symptom that has gone or subsided can also be classed as a relapse in some situations too.

Hope that helps



This is what it says in the McDonald criteria: “The Panel considered again what constitutes an attack (relapse, exacerbation) and defined this as patient-reported symptoms or objectively observed signs typical of an acute inflammatory demyelinating event in the CNS… with duration of at least 24 hours, in the absence of fever or infection.” So basically symptoms typical of an MS attack that can’t be explained by a virus or infection and that last at least 24 hours.

There is another rule that most people apply on top of that: that it starts at least a month from the start of a previous relapse. If it’s within a month, it’s considered part of the same relapse.

From what you’ve said, it sounds like a second attack and you should certainly tell your GP and your neuro. (Plus, the fact your right side is now affected cannot be explained by your existing cerebellar lesion. Sorry :frowning: )

Karen x

Thanks Karen - I had suspected that it was a brand new symptom and therefore a relapse - just wasnt sure if it would be classed as a relapse because I still haven’t got over the original episode. I also wondered if it could be a trapped nerve as when I hold it in a certain position is shakes and it only came on in the last couple of days after sleeping awkwardly. It’s such a worrying time not knowing what’s going on and more so the symptoms are still here and would have hoped they would have gone mostly by now. I see on here that people can have vertigo for months, years even- don’t know how they cope with it I’m not doing too great and I’ve only been suffering since April!

It certainly could be something physical instead of neurological - best to see your GP to make sure.

It’s still early days yet for your symptoms - don’t give up hope that they’ll improve!

Karen x

Thanks Karen just feel so fed up and don’t know what to do and how to cope. The last couple of years have been bad enough and now with all this plus the new symptom I’m struggling