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Book Reviews
December 2005

Missing Article Title

Arch Neurol. 2005;62(12):1936-1937. doi:10.1001/archneur.62.12.1936

edited by Stephen G. Waxman, MD, PhD, 496 pp, with illus, $170, ISBN 0-12-738761-7, Boston, Mass, Elsevier Academic Press, 2005.

Over the last 140 years, multiple sclerosis (MS) has come full circle. In the second half of the 19th century, Jean Martin Charcot and William Moxon were perhaps the first to recognize the presence of axonopathies in MS histopathologic examination findings. Max Bielschowsky, Otto Marburg, Russel Brain, and Charles Lumsden later confirmed their observations. Thus, it is surprising that until recently most medical textbooks referred to MS as a disorder of the central nervous system (CNS), characterized by destruction of the myelin with axonal sparing. In addition, much of the information about MS that is currently available on the Internet contains inaccuracies in this regard. For practicing neurologists, residents, and medical students, perhaps no scientific contribution has provided clarity on the histopathologic findings of MS lesions as dramatically as a relatively recent publication by Trapp et al1 who showed that transected axons are a consistent feature of MS lesions. In addition, it was shown that the frequency of axonal transactions was related to the degree of inflammation within CNS lesions. These observations have since been reproduced by various groups.