Q&A With Maureen Mealy, RN, from Johns Hopkins: Neuromyelitis Optica and Multiple Sclerosis Differences Matter in Diagnosis and Treatment

The symptoms of neuromyelitis optica and multiple sclerosis may appear similar at first glance but an improper diagnosis can create more issues for patients than they originally experienced.

The symptoms of neuromyelitis optica and multiple sclerosis may appear similar at first glance but an improper diagnosis can create more issues for patients than they originally experienced.

Maureen A. Mealy, RN, BSN, MSCN, CNRN, from Johns Hopkins University discussed the challenges in diagnosing this rare condition compared to the more known of neurological disorders during the 2015 Annual Meeting of the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers in Indianapolis. Mealy said a blood test can easily differentiate between the two but it is currently not widely used among doctors. She added that the treatments used for multiple sclerosis can be "toxic for the neuromyelitis optica patients.