The medical need in MS spasticity
Over 80% of the estimated two million MS patients worldwide suffer from some degree of spasticity. Spasticity causes pain, interferes with activities of daily life such as walking, may cause serious joint damage, and in severe cases can be completely disabling. Spasticity patients may suffer from shortening of muscles, contractures, deformed limbs, pressure sores and pain, and often require limb braces, special wheelchairs and other equipment to relieve pressure.
Spasticity in MS plays a major role in the destructive nature of the disease, and generally worsens as the underlying disease progresses. Severe spasticity requires highly expensive care, placing a major burden on caregivers and healthcare providers. Spasticity ranges from moderately disruptive to totally debilitating for at least a third of MS patients, creating a substantial pool of patients in need of effective treatment for a chronic, life-long condition. Current anti-spastic agents exhibit burdensome side effects that limit their utility and result in delayed treatment, poor uptake, and poor patient compliance.