Naturopathic physicians view Multiple Sclerosis as they do other disease processes, that is, from a holistic perspective. The illness is seen as a combination of physical, mental/emotional, and in some cases, spiritual aspects.
A naturopathic physician will use a variety of diagnostic methods to evaluate the patient. These range from conventional testing, such as laboratory studies, magnetic resonance imaging and ultra sound examination, to the less well known pulse and tongue diagnostic procedures.
By using a combination of diagnostic modalities, as well as listening to what the person has to say about his or her illness, the physician is better able to assess the disordered internal environment.
Naturopathic physicians do not see the disease process as being incurable. Nor do they see it as inevitable decline, as they believe in the healing power of nature, or vis medicatrix naturae.
What is important to understand is that the healing ability of the body begins early at the onset of the disease before any destruction of the nervous system or pathology takes place. This is why early diagnosis is often missed by conventional medicine as it relies primarily on the presence of diagnostic markers such as the presence of oligoclonal proteins in the spinal fluid, or a poor flicker-fusion response. These changes are not seen until there is a considerable progression of the disease.
Because any symptom is seen as an attempt by the body to correct itself, MS may be treated early, allowing for a greater rate of success and recovery. Even patients who are in the advanced stages will benefit from natural therapeutics as they act in harmony with the normal body healing processes.
Naturopathic physicians may use a variety of therapeutic modalities ranging from conventional drug therapy to diet and nutrition, homeopathy, physical medicine, acupuncture, and the use of plants or botanical medicine, while treating the whole person, not necessarily just the "disease".