A 38-year-old female patient comes in with complaints of double vision, visual loss, weakness, numbness of hands, fatigue, and tremors that have been worsening over the past several months. During admission, the nurse notes nystagmus, scanning speech, ataxia, muscular weakness, and incontinence. Considering these findings, the nurse suspects that the patient has

Multiple sclerosis.

Explanation

• The patient's manifestations are indicative of multiple sclerosis, which is more common among women between ages 20-40 years old.

• Multiple sclerosis is a chronic, progressive, neurologic disease characterized by scattered patches of demyelination within the brain and spinal cord. The disease is marked by remissions and exacerbations.

• Signs and symptoms include visual disturbances, impaired sensation, mood swings, impaired motor function and cerebellar functions, impaired urination, constipation, and sexual impotence in the male.

• Incorrect: Parkinson's disease involves masklike appearance to the face, presence of drooling, slow speech, and shuffling gait. 

• Incorrect: Myasthenia gravis involves weakness, fatigue, drooling, and ptosis. 

• Incorrect: Persons with ALS have symptoms of muscle weakness, atrophy, fasciculations, dysphagia, and spasticity of the flexor muscles.

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