Thanks everyone for their advice. I'm lucky in that I only have it mildly, and can still function; I just find I can't work AND have a social life - it's one or the other. TBH if I let my body have it's way, I'd never do anything. For instance, I've resumed proper flute practice which I haven't done for a year. I've been practicing daily for a week now and did some flute practice yesterday. My muscles have decided, that after a week of being ok, that last night they were going to play up and spasm. The paresthesia is back in my left ring and little finger, which is really annoying me today. Yet I can go to Moscow and London for a week and feel generally ok (until a couple of weeks later and it hits me), so I don't get how the reaction degrees and time can vary! As for taking time out - my supervisor strongly recommended I don't. As it was, this whole debacle delayed the completion of my MA which meant I couldn't start the PhD until January, and then switching part-time in April. I'm having enough motivational issues now that she feels (and I'm inclined to agree) if I stop I'll find it even harder to start again/ TBH I doubt I would continue if I suspended studies.