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MS Symptom-Reducing Pregnancy Hormone

July 20th, 2015

Having a chronic disease such as multiple sclerosis (MS) is worrisome enough, as is pregnancy.

What happens when both occur simultaneously?

This could cause a few women to worry, especially since before the 1950's, women with MS were warned to avoid pregnancy. However, after this bump in time had us fearing the worst, studies as well as women have attested to alleviated MS symptoms while pregnant.

Since pregnancy is responsible for growth and development, women acquire immense amounts of estrogen throughout those nine months. While they swapped out the MS symptoms for pregnancy ones, it has been discovered that the form of estrogen called estriol is to thank for these less frequent or even no symptoms.

It was found in a large study in 1998 that women’s pregnancy did have an effect on MS symptoms, then in 2014 it was discovered by Dr. Rhonda Voskuhl, that it is indeed the doing of estriol. Not only does the hormone reduce these MS attacks and symptoms but also directly protects the brain, which is unlike any other drug available for MS treatment.

There was a trial conducted at sixteen different sites across the U.S. with two groups of women. One group was given a placebo pill and Copaxone, a commonly prescribed drug for MS, and the other was given a Copaxone pill and an estriol pill each day. The group that contained estriol pill had been shown to reduce relapse rate by 50 percent within only one year of treatment.

This then led to the discovery that the hormone can be used to treat and alleviate symptoms in MS patients that are not expecting mothers, or fathers, for that matter. While it has been tested out on women using the trial of the hormone, this form of estrogen has also been used to conduct multiple other trials.  

The hormone, which is available in the form of a pill, is currently present and being used safely in places like Europe and Asia. While this potential treatment seems to have done the job right, it is still in the process of approval for treatment use in the U.S. Although Estriol continues to go through many more trials, it seems very likely that we will be seeing the pill out soon enough. 

MS Symptom-Reducing Pregnancy Hormone - Mon July 20, 2015 4:24 PM