Course 3: Diagnosis and Assessment

This course explains the diagnostic criteria for MS along with the associated diagnostic tools, their results and consequences in a manner that a nurse can easily understand and interpret, and then relay to a person who has MS.

What you will Learn

After completing this course, you should be better able to:

  • Describe the neurological examination and its role in the diagnosis of MS
  • Understand the concept of dissemination in time and space outlined in the McDonald Criteria
  • Discuss critical components of the differential diagnosis in MS
  • Describe the McDonald Criteria in relation to a diagnosis of MS
  • Explain results from magnetic resonance imaging and their relevance to a diagnosis of MS
  • Discuss the importance of the presence of oligoclonal bands in the cerebrospinal fluid
  • Describe evoked potential tests and their significance
  • Identify an MS relapse
  • Differentiate relapse from disease progression and other non-MS related conditions
  • Describe the EDSS, MSFC and the MSSS assessment tools
  • Discuss how these tools assist in monitoring disease progression in MS

Target Audience

This activity has been developed to meet the educational needs of nurses who have an interest in optimising the management of people with MS.


The estimated time to complete this course is 5 hours.

Method of Participation

There are no fees for participating and receiving CME credit for this activity. Participants must:

  1. Read the learning objectives
  2. Participate in the entire educational activity, consisting of 5 foundation courses
  3. Complete the exam for each course by recording the best answer to each question; a 75% pass mark is required
  4. Complete the feedback survey

A certificate of completion will be available to download at the end of each course. Upon successful completion of all 5 courses which make up the foundation programme, you will be provided with a statement of accreditation which you can download, save and print.

Practical Information

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