One of the lesser-known signs of MS is a phenomenon called ‘Dawson’s fingers.
Dawson’s fingers, also known as periventricular lesions or Dawson’s fingers sign, are a characteristic radiological finding in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans of the brain.
The presence of Dawson’s fingers results from the demyelination process that occurs in multiple sclerosis. Demyelination refers to the damage or loss of myelin, the protective covering around nerve fibers in the central nervous system. As myelin is essential for efficient nerve signal transmission, its loss can lead to various neurological symptoms.
The finger-like projections seen in Dawson’s fingers are areas where demyelination has occurred. These lesions can disrupt the normal flow of cerebrospinal fluid, which may contribute to the symptoms experienced by individuals with MS. Dawson’s fingers are typically found near the ventricles. Still, they can also extend into other brain areas.
It’s important to note that the presence of Dawson’s fingers does not necessarily correlate with the severity of MS symptoms. Some individuals with minimal finger-like projections may experience significant symptoms, while others with extensive Dawson’s fingers may have mild symptoms.
The extent and location of these lesions can vary greatly among individuals with MS.
If you have been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and have come across the term ‘Dawson’s fingers,’ it’s important to discuss this finding with your healthcare team.
Your healthcare provider can help you understand the implications of this radiological finding and guide you in managing your symptoms effectively.
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