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This Morning doctor explains multiple sclerosis symptoms

When 21-year-old Jenna Chudasama started suffering blackouts and double vision, doctors dismissed her as a “typical” drunk student.

She also noticed she would walk and suddenly veer off course, while another time she woke up on the floor of her university halls without knowing how she had got there.

It wasn’t until the “terrifying” experience of having double vision while driving that she decided to fight further for answers.

Speaking exclusively with, Jenna recalled: “I kept finding that I had problems walking without veering off course, but I just dismissed these balance problems until one day during my postgraduate teaching degree, drinking albuterol for weight loss when I blacked out and found myself on the floor in halls, with no idea what had happened.”

Her GP told Jenna and her mother: “Well you know university students drink a lot,” despite their protests that she was completely sober.

READ MORE Woman, 23, hit with MS diagnosis after experiencing dizziness and blurred vision

“Later that year I had double vision while driving, a truly terrifying experience – seeing two lanes suddenly become four,” Jenna said.

Luckily Jenna safely managed to pull over and called her dad to come and drive her home.

Jenna, now 37, said: “At this point I knew I couldn’t be dismissed anymore and was determined to be heard.”

A few months later in 2009 Jenna underwent an MRI scan which revealed the shocking truth – that she had multiple sclerosis (MS).

Jenna, who lives in Leicester, was left feeling confused and afraid.

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She said: “I had never heard of MS – it hadn’t been mentioned in any conversations and I wasn’t supported in understanding the condition.

“I had no support for how I was to process this information.

“I think living with MS is particularly hard for young people – there is a dismissal that your symptoms can’t be an issue because of your age and a rush to conclude that age means a symptom is caused by drugs or alcohol.”

Since her diagnosis Jenna went on to marry her husband, have a daughter, and become a teacher.

She now lives with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis – a condition that means she has episodes of new or worsening symptoms that can worsen over a few days and last for varying amounts of time.

“I am fortunate to have my support system of my husband, parents and close friends,” she said.

“My husband especially is always on hand to hear concerns and to provide a rational outlook when I can feel that I am lacking one.”

What is MS?

MS is a serious lifelong condition that can affect the brain and spinal cord, leading to a wide range of symptoms such as problems with vision, arm or leg movement, sensation or balance.

Average life expectancy is slightly reduced for people with MS.

Common symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Vision problems
  • Numbness and tingling
  • Muscle spasms, stiffness and weakness
  • Mobility problems
  • Pain
  • Problems with thinking, learning and planning
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Sexual problems
  • Bladder problems
  • Bowel problems
  • Speech and swallowing difficulties.

Jenna has shared her story after a recent survey by the MS Trust of more than 2,000 people living with MS found that one in two of them (52 percent) waited three years or more for a diagnosis.

The survey further revealed that 94 percent of patients said their condition has affected their mental health, with 60 percent of patients experiencing low self esteem and 51 percent reporting feelings of isolation and loneliness.

To find out more about the condition and a campaign by the MS Trust to change the mental health pathway for MS patients, visit

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