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It started when she was 12. Her legs were numb all the time and she couldn't figure out why. Since they had just moved from Oklahoma to Idaho she figured that she was just cold, so she cranked up the heat in her room.

When she took showers though, she noticed that she couldn't feel hot water. For a long time she assumed that the heating in their new house didn't work, until one day she asked her mother about it. She looked worried and replied that "No, the water heater works fine".

Thus began the first of what would be many doctor visits.

Follow me below the fold

What is Multiple Sclerosis?

Multiple Sclerosis (MS for short) is an auto-immune disease, in which the body turns on itself. In this case the victim is the myelin sheath that protects the nerves. Think of the myelin sheath has the rubber coating around electrical wires. When the body attacks these they become frayed and damage the nerves. The body forms scar tissue around these (sclerosis), thus the name of the disease.

She was happy she was involved in her church. For awhile there she hadn't had been able to have any energy to do anything at all. She slept in late, got up and ran a couple of errands, then took an afternoon nap. She was able to be up when her husband came home from work, but she went to bed early. So tired all the time, but at least she could get involved with the teenage girls in the church youth program.

One Sunday morning she was having a meeting with her advisors when she suddenly couldn't speak. It wasn't the typical "brain cramp" that many of us have--no words whatsoever would come out. She burst into tears and dismissed her meeting. When her husband came home from his meeting she still couldn't talk and was in panic. The only communication was by writing. The next day all was back to normal, but she never forgot that feeling.

When any part of the myelin sheath or nerve fiber is damaged or destroyed, nerve impulses traveling to and from the brain and spinal cord are distorted or interrupted, producing the variety of symptoms that can occur. Paraylsis can occur (though it's not commoon). So can blindness. 75% of those diagnosed with MS end up having to use some sort of device to help them walk within 10 years of their diagnosis. The symptoms are varied, but here are the most common:

Some symptoms of MS are much more common than others.

Fatigue
Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of MS, occurring in about 80% of people. Fatigue can significantly interfere with a person's ability to function at home and at work, and may be the most prominent symptom in a person who otherwise has minimal activity limitations.

Numbness
Numbness of the face, body, or extremities (arms and legs) is one of the most common symptoms of MS, and is often the first symptom experienced by those eventually diagnosed as having MS.

Walking (Gait), Balance, & Coordination Problems
Problems with gait (difficulty in walking) are among the most common mobility limitations in MS.

Bladder Dysfunction
Bladder dysfunction, which occurs in at least 80% of people with MS, usually can be managed quite successfully

Bowel Dysfunction
Constipation is a particular concern among people living with MS, as is loss of control of the bowels.

Vision Problems
A vision problem is the first symptom of MS for many people. The sudden onset of double vision, poor contrast, eye pain, or heavy blurring is frankly terrifying-and the knowledge that vision may be compromised can make people with MS anxious about the future.

Dizziness and Vertigo
Dizziness is a common symptom of MS. People with MS can feel off balance or dizy, or suffer from extreme vertigo.

Sexual Dysfunction
Sexual arousal begins in the central nervous system, as the brain sends messages to the sexual organs along nerves running through the spinal cord. If MS damages these nerve pathways, sexual response—including arousal and orgasm—can be directly affected. Sexual problems also stem from MS symptoms such as fatigue or spasticity, as well as from psychological factors relating to self-esteem and mood changes.

Pain
Pain syndromes are common in MS. In one study, 55% of people with MS had "clinically significant pain" at some time. Almost half were troubled by chronic pain.

Cognitive Function
Cognition refers to a range of high-level brain functions, including the ability to learn and remember information: organize, plan, and problem-solve; focus, maintain, and shift attention as necessary; understand and use language; accurately perceive the environment, and perform calculations. Cognitive changes are common in people with MS—approximately 50% of people with MS will develop problems with cognition.

Emotional Changes
Emotional changes are very common in MS—as a reaction to the stresses of living with a chronic, unpredictable illness and because of neurologic and immune changes caused by the disease.

Depression
Depression is common during the course of multiple sclerosis. In fact, studies have suggested that clinical depression, the severest form of depression, is more frequent among people with MS than it is in the general population or in persons with other chronic, disabling conditions.


Spasticity

Spasticity refers to feelings of stiffness and a wide range of involuntary muscle spasms (sustained muscle contractions or sudden movements). It is one of the more common symptoms of MS. Spasticity may be as mild as the feeling of tightness of muscles or may be so severe as to produce painful, uncontrollable spasms of extremities, usually of the legs. Spasticity may also produce feelings of pain or tightness in and around joints, and can cause low back pain. Although spasticity can occur in any limb, it is much more common in the legs.

They were finally pregnant. After three years of marriage, three years of hopes and crushed dreams they were having a baby boy. She knew it was going to be a tough pregnancy. She'd have to quit most of her medications for fear of them crossing the placenta wall and harming the baby. She was ok with that--she could deal with pain. One morning though, she woke up and started spasming. Imagine an epileptic's seizure, only in this case it just affects the lower half of the body. Even scarier, an epileptic is unconscious during their seizure--she was totally conscious. Aware of everything that was happening, but completely unable to control it. They never lasted long, a few seconds at most, but they happened nearly every day. Seems that her body was reacting to the drug withdrawal by creating a new symptom for her. Worried for her safety and that of her unborn child, she talked to her neurologist. He suggested baclofen as an anti-spasticity drug. "It'll be safe", he said. "Safer than zanaflex or skelaxin at any rate."

The day finally happened. A fine boy, born two weeks early. In all respects a healthy boy. Only he suffered from seizures too (at least that's what they looked like). After three days in the NICU at the local hospital, the doctors threw up their hands and sent him down to Primary Children's in Salt Lake City, where the specialists said that it was medication withdrawal. He stayed there for a week and a half before finally coming home.

While MS is not thought to be hereditary, it can cause some not so obvious family related problems. A low immune system can passed on to children. Trying to raise a family is tough enough--managing a sometimes debilitating disease makes it even tougher. We don't know what causes MS. Since we don't know the cause we can't find a cure--the best we can do is treat the symptoms and manage the pain as best we can.

Health care costs are exorbitant--mostly because of medication costs. On an average year my insurance company spends $80-90,000 on drugs. The two week stay in NICU for our son was $115,000. I thank the Lord that I have great health insurance throughy my job, but if I were to lose that job we'd be bankrupt in a year.

If you can spare a couple of dollars a donation to the National MS Society will go a long way towards funding research. If you can't spare the change, but have some free time find your local chapter and volunteer.

If you're in southeast Idaho and would like to participate in the Idaho Falls MS walk, shoot me an email at smileyman2002 at hotmail.com and I'll give you all the details.

National MS Society
National MS Society

Find Your Local Chapter
Find Your Chapter

Donate to our team. (Team name is MS Free World)
Donate

If nothing else, spend a few minutes to acquaint yourself with the disease. Chances are you know someone who has been afflicted with it.

Originally posted to smileyman on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 03:31 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I have MS (16+ / 0-)

    Thankfully a very mild version of it.

    It doesn't affect me much at all, but the drug I take costs about $12,000 a year. Insurance covers the vast majority of that, but I wonder what would happen if I ever lost my job.

    •  Which of the ABC's are you on? (6+ / 0-)

      my wife takes Copaxone, as well as Kinneret (for her arthritis). It's a pretty effective combo--she hasn't had a relapse since the birth of our son.

    •  All of the drugs have some program to help (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AmericanRiverCanyon

      with payments for the uninsured, depending on your income. I wasn't too impressed by them although it does make them a lot cheaper. For one I would have to buy 5 months and then get the rest of the year free. Others had varying arrangements but would have cost about the same.
      It was actually a relief to me. My neurologist had been pushing me to start one and while he was irritated by my reasons not to he understood me saying that the last thing I needed to do was add poverty to my list of problems.

      I was diagnosed in 83 but probably had it for almost a decade. (I had odd fleeting symptoms that I didn't get checked during those years) There was no medicine at that time and tired of conflicting advice I stayed away from doctors,figured I'd listen to my own body.
      I did see one in 88 when I had optic neuritis but it was
      the late 90's before I saw a neurologists again and by then they wanted me on the MS drugs. I had no new lesions per MRI, no new attacks...and it was just hard to feel the drugs were a good idea for me.
      If I was a new case I'd have taken it because the research shows some effectiveness but there wasn't research for starting it 20 years into the disease.

      The neurologist sent me to a couple of specialists to still change my mind and decide the money was worth it. To his dismay both of them said they wouldn't take it if they were me either (though they thought I should if it was all covered just to be on the safe side)

      No new attacks, just residual damage that flares with exertion and also that old friend fatigue.

      It could be a coincidence but a few years ago I read a couple of studies, neither about MS but other auto-immune diseases.
      One found that people who ate fatty fish like salmon at least 2-3 times per week early in the course of the active disease not only had less severe symptoms but a long term more benign course. Well remember I said I decided to just listen to my body? I craved salmon and ate it almost every day. Even when I had some unrelated oral surgery and couldn't chew I put it in the blender. I use to laugh at myself for it...but when I'd do my tuning in thing I'd sense salmon (and apricots and cherries and walnuts.) Odd.

      The other study was on Journal writing. It was in the late 90's at some New York University. The participants had asthma or rheumatoid arthritis. Some were told to write about the stressful events and the rest to write about their daily plans. They all wrote for the same amount of time each day, 20 minutes I think.
      They were all examined by specialists at baseline and regular intervals after that. About half who wrote about stressful experiences had substantial improvement (objective findings as well as subjective) while less than a quarter of daily plan people did.
      About a quarter of the daily plan writers got worse during the time they were followed...and less than 5% of the group that wrote on stressful events got worse.

      There were differences between how the two illness groups reacted...or how long it took. Don't recall that because I didn't have either. I do recall what impressed me was that the findings were measurable and objective ones. It was spirometry for asthma patients...can't recall the other.

      Anyway in the "listening to body" phase back in the 60's I started writing/journaling.  Almost not a choice, anymore than going to the bathroom is. Something in there had to get out. It was almost daily the first couple years. I laughed at myself for that too.

      So it could be sheer coincidence, some people just have a more benign course. It was just striking to see the studies years later on the odd things that came on so strong in my listening to my self time...and see that at least in other conditions they had a real impact...so just in case I thought I'd share them. Salmon and journal writing never hurt anyone. (Well except for toxins in farm fed salmon...)

  •  Thank you smileyman, (5+ / 0-)

    this is a great primer and I plan to share it with my daughters. My wife was diagnosed with MS last year. We are still learning about the disease, but this past Saturday fielded a GREAT team in our local MS Walk. All the best to you.

    •  Good luck in your journey (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Birdman, joynow, Cassandra77, bablhous

      You'll find many people have no idea what MS means or how it can affect people.

      Your daughters may not understand why your wife can't find the right words, or why she's tired all the time and doesn't want to go out. Hopefully this helps.

      MS affects more women than men--at a nearly 2:1 ratio.

      •  It does help. Side note: in our case, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joynow, Cassandra77

        a lot of my wife's symptoms had been there for some time, but we think were being attributed to her battle with metastatic melanoma (20+ years now), including sites and surgeries in the breast, bowel and brain. She was in a clinical trial for a number of years which focused on fortifying her immune system, and sometimes we wonder whether there is a connection.

        Thanks again.

  •  You might look into long-term antibiotic therapy. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marina, smileyman

    My SO is on it for CFIDS, but it has many other uses:

    CPN Help

    A long-term, difficult to detect bacterial infection can lead to the immune system over-reaction implicated in auto-immune diseases.

    Google the "Wheldon protocol" for more.

    WereBear
    Pootie fan? Me too! Check out my cat advice blog.
    The Way of Cats

    by WereBear on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 03:58:10 PM PDT

    •  I'll check into it. (0+ / 0-)

      We have to be careful with my wife as she also suffers from severe asthma and arthritis.

      •  Another condition which mimics MS closely is (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joynow

        ... a form of gluten intolerance which results in neurological symptoms instead of the celiac form which manifests as gut/digestive problems and weight loss.  It is also an auto immune reaction which causes damage to the intestinal lining, caused by reacting to the proteins in the wheat, rye, and barley families. Nutrients don't get absorbed, and that results in all sorts of very interesting symptoms, many in common with MS.  Patients get brain lesions also, which are called "bright spots."

        I was going down that list mentally checking off the symptoms, yup, yup, yup.... been there, done that, got the tee shirt.  If this is the actual problem and you stick to the gluten free diet closely, most of it (the weirdo neuro symptoms)  slowly reverses itself.  I still have the arthritis damage and the asthma, but am off any daily meds for both.  

        It's pretty hard to diagnose correctly in this country, because we are bass ackwards behind other European countries which screen patients more often, (Italy screens for the genes at birth!) and have physicians who are more aware of the genetics, but if I keep on talking about it, we may have more awareness.

        My one eye still crosses sometimes when I look at a computer screen, and flashing graphics are super annoying.  I told doctors for almost 30 years I was seeing different shades of colors out of it, besides the waviness/distortion, and none of them could figure it out or they misdiagnosed me again and again.  

        "Toads of Glory, slugs of joy... as he trotted down the path before a dragon ate him"-Alex Hall/ Stop McClintock

        by AmericanRiverCanyon on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 06:56:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  MS is a strange disease (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joynow, bablhous, Naniboujou, smileyman

    It can be a very mild disease with very few symptons(like I have) or an extremely progressive and devestating disease (which killed my great-grandmother. Luckily, it is a manageable disease for the vast majority of people afflicted with it.

    Hoping for a cure in the next 20 years, there is a lot of promising research.

    •  And for those who have a more serious form of it (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Birdman, joynow, bablhous

      It's not always the same. Some days are great, some not so good.

      The days that are great MS suffers try to get everything done they couldn't before, only their body can't handle it making it even worse the day after.

      I'm constantly having to tell my wife to slow down.

      •  "Someday syndrome" (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joynow, smileyman

        .... "someday I may not be able to do that so I'd better haul ass and get it done now. while I still can"    You blow thru an entire table setting of energy "spoons" that day.  

        Spoon theory is a story people with chronic conditions tell that explains how everybody gets so many "spoons" of energy, but they use many of them up just doing the normal maintenance things that other people don't think about.  By the time they get to run the errand, for instance, they're low, or social things can be exhausting if you just want to be a person and blend in and it's taking a lot of psychic energy to pull that off.

        "Toads of Glory, slugs of joy... as he trotted down the path before a dragon ate him"-Alex Hall/ Stop McClintock

        by AmericanRiverCanyon on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 07:03:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Rec'd/tipped. Too bad this is hitting in the (8+ / 0-)
    middle of the Spectre hullaballoo.

    Best wishes to you and your family.

    "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government. Always hopeful yet discontent, he knows changes aren't permanent. But change is." -Neil Peart

    by Boisepoet on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 04:08:22 PM PDT

  •  I know I sound like a broken record, but (4+ / 0-)

    I strongly urge anyone diagnosed with MS to be tested for lyme disease.

    Lyme manifests symptoms that are often indistinguishable from MS. (I personally know two people diagnosed as having MS that turned out to have Lyme and were successfully treated.) This is not to take anything away from MS sufferers, or to say MS doesn't exist. I simply think that lyme is often a cause for MS-like symptoms that is not properly diagnosed.

    Other diseases that lyme mimics, or may actually be the etiological agent for, are "non-standard" RA, Fibro, CFS, Sjogren's, IBS, hyperthyroidism, or Raynaud's. If you have ever been diagnosed with more than one of these, it's very possibly lyme and you need to be tested.

    I recommend testing through a specialty tick lab like www.igenex.com.

    More information about lyme can be found at lymenet.org.

    "'club America salutes you' says the girl on the door/we accept all major lies, we love any kind of war"--The Cure, "Club America"

    by Wheever on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 04:11:52 PM PDT

  •  I have a friend who was diagnosed (4+ / 0-)

    several years ago. So far, symptoms have been mild. But he is very worried. So much so, that he has made plans for that inevitability. He plans on suicide. It breaks my heart but I understand. I just hope that he stays functioning for as long as possible.

    As long as prejudice exists in this country - in this world - we are all its victims. ~~ Keith Olbermann

    by Purple Priestess on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 04:16:11 PM PDT

    •  Yikes (4+ / 0-)

      Has mild symptons and plans on suicide? Is he nuts?

      I don't really let it affect me at all. There are a lot of diseases that are much worse!

      •  not nuts, depressed (3+ / 0-)

        Depression sets in with the reality and some imaginings about living with a debilitating disease. Perfectly natural, really.

        Somebody showed it to me and I found it by myself. Lew Welch

        by lexalou on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 04:35:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Is he in a group of some sort? (3+ / 0-)

          If not, he needs to be.  He has NO realization of what might or MIGHT NOT happen.  Prepared?  Yes.  But in a positive way.

          In 1991 my husband hauled me off to the emergency room of our local hospital because I couldn't eat.  I tried, but none of it stayed down.  I was having a hard time walking and I had double vision on and off.  They couldn't find anything wrong after going through a whole series of tests that included a CAT scan.

          We returned home.  The next day my family doctor (through some very interesting machinations that I can't being to imagine--which is why I won't diss Osteopaths) got me back into the hospital where I was for the next 10 days on an IV and a bed pan.  

          I ended up at the Cleveland Clinic Mellen Center.  I started to get much better on my own and I finally did get that spinal tap they were all hounding me about.  (Stuff allegedly shows up in the spinal fluid that will tell you if you likely have MS--unless, of course, you are me and it was a crap shoot).  

          I had a little bit o' steroids and once that was done after a few weeks went pretty much back to normal.  As such.  

          I have trouble with my eyesight, my balance, my ability to read is starting to hit the bricks (cognition), and I get really, REALLY tired and depressed a lot.  

          Am I dead? NO.  I'm here to tell the tale.  Me and my eyepatch.  Oh, and I have a stick.  (It's special.  My late father trimmed the oak in their front yard and it was one of the branches.)  I don't have to use it a lot, but as long as I have it with me I figure I can use it as a weapon and I feel invincible.

          As frustrating as MS is there are ways around it.

          Any spelling and/or grammar errors are entirely my own.

          April is National Autism Awareness month.

          by Powered Grace on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 06:12:25 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Not now... eventually. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AmericanRiverCanyon

        When the symptoms get so bad that he cannot function. No, he's okay now, just pragmatic.

        As long as prejudice exists in this country - in this world - we are all its victims. ~~ Keith Olbermann

        by Purple Priestess on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 06:47:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Yowsers (3+ / 0-)

      In all but the most extreme forms MS is manageable. It's frustrating because the symptoms are so varied and unpredictable, but most people live healthy lives long after they're diagnosed.

  •  I recently saw the film "Go Now" starring... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joynow, karmsy, smileyman

    Robert Carlyle. Have you seen it? A pretty amazing portrayal of a young man (and the people who love him) dealing with MS from right before his diagnosis.

  •  I have the Mother of all MS! (7+ / 0-)

    I am NOT a fan of the MS Society.

    To make matters worse, the drugs don't work for me.  Every morning I wake to find that ascending paralysis has stolen a bit more of me.

    In spite of it all, I keep a positive attitude.  Just like the girl at the beach in the herpes commercial...

    "Let's just get everybody together, let's get unified, the sky will open, the light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing..."

    by whatnext on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 04:20:59 PM PDT

    •  Attitude is everything (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joynow

      .... I am not a fan of my ex arthritis support group because they are all about the pharma drugs and I can't take any of that strong crap.  

      Hey, if the drugs are so wonderful why are they all disabled and in pain inspite of being on 5 to 10 scripts anyway?  (how to get banned off a support site.... )  

      Most of those anti inflammatories have as a known side effect depression..... that is what is helping your attitude....   for mercy's sake just don't mention that you heard it from me.  

      You aren't just your body.  You just got a bad container this round. May you find joy and peace.  

      "Toads of Glory, slugs of joy... as he trotted down the path before a dragon ate him"-Alex Hall/ Stop McClintock

      by AmericanRiverCanyon on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 07:16:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I don't like MS society either. DO like (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      whatnext, smileyman

      Multiple Sclerosis Foundation

      They have so many services...including free cooling vests and other cooling wear that I got. We don't function as well as we warm up and it has made a nice difference. I see it has changed at the site. Use to be a lifetime loan (did they really want them back if we died?) and needed a doctors note. Now you can apply on line and it seems income related.

      Hoping things get better for us all (MS or not really)
      Even things that get worse can suddenly get better either through new medical findings or because bodies are strange. I had a sister in law who was wheel chair bound with MS for many years and then it all came back. She ended up back in high heels to her delight. I lost touch after my divorce but she was still walking and delighted with that when I last saw her.
      We just never know

      But you seem to have the key in any case...just like the happy herpes girl.

  •  I have a mild form of MS (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cassandra77, marina, karmsy, smileyman

    I was diagnosed in my late forties. I had an unrelated problem that sent me to the doctor - an eye migraine, which I never had before. My primary doctor then sent me to a neurologist. When I flunked the reflex test, I had an MRI, which showed several brain lesions. Had several other rather unpleasant tests after that including a Lumbar Puncture.

    Prior to that, I had tingling in my right arm for several months. Didn't think much of it at the time but it was a MS symptom.

    Luckily, the MS is just in the sensory area. I tried copaxone but had bad sight reactions. The reaction was worse than my symptoms. So, I'm not on any meds at this point. Right now, I'm waiting to get approval for my annual MRI appointment.

    Thank you for posting this diary.

    Lauren

  •  About the National MS Society (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joynow, whatnext

    last I heard, in the 90s, it was funded very heavily by pharmaceutical corporations Biogen and TevaMarion, manufacturers of MS drugs. This is problematic, since the official policy of the MS Society had been not to endorse any particular treatment for MS. Suddenly, you had professional speakers at MS Society meetings getting up and proclaiming "everybody in this room should be on (one of the major TevaMarion or Biogen MS drugs)." Hmmm...

    It bugged me enough that I declined to join the MS Society when I was first diagnosed, and have kept my distance since.

    About the drug therapies. Upon my diagnosis, I had one neurologist in particular back me into a corner and threaten me with what was going to happen to me if I didn't get myself on a drug of some kind to combat the disease. Well, I went to support groups, and I ran into plenty of people already taking one of the drugs. Turned out almost nobody I talked to was happy with them. They were frightfully expensive; they were inconvenient; they produced many side-effects, when they worked at all. I said, Thanks, but no thanks.

    This was nine years ago. I still get around and function well enough that you'd never realize I had a problem--although I do deal with annoying symptoms (like weak bladder control :), and it still affects my life in other ways.

    I don't think the going allopathic treatments are very good. I also don't feel that I've found the "perfect" alternative remedy, after having tried several...

    This is still an ongoing story for me.

    •  Not that way anymore (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      karmsy

      They do a great job of sponsoring seminars where professionals come in and talk about various aspects. They also help people who can't otherwise afford meds.

      They were instrumental in lobbying Congress to get Tysabri approved which has helped out a great many people with MS.

      •  they were very helpful (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        joynow, karmsy

        My younger brother had it. A very aggressive case. We moved him from Colorado back to the home state where we could look after him better. The MS Society was invaluable. Meds, info, contacts, everything we could think of and more.

        Somebody showed it to me and I found it by myself. Lew Welch

        by lexalou on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 04:40:30 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Thank You Smileyman. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    karmsy, smileyman

    An honest and self-revelatory diary is always welcome.
    And useful.

    "So, Pal, now tell me: What did YOU do to help the least among your people?" "Well, ummm, Mr. God, Sir..."

    by lurkersince03 on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 04:39:46 PM PDT

  •  Dr. Swank had good results (3+ / 0-)

    treating MS with diet. He wrote a book and published technical papers. He's now retired I believe but continuing his research is Dr. John McDougall. If you want to ask Dr. McDougall about this you can email him directly (see the "about" page on his website). There is a lot of support for this approach.

    Oops! I'm gonna need a whole new sig!

    by sillia on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 05:06:13 PM PDT

    •  Many different treatments (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AmericanRiverCanyon

      are available. I believe that there's not one single treatment course that works for everybody.

    •  Oh, he's the low fat anti dairy guy (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joynow

      ....  I'm glad I checked the link.

      I don't do low fat high carb but to each his/her own.  But that's interesting he's anti dairy.  Some gluten intolerants and celiacs still can not do dairy even after they've healed up.   Have you heard anything that it could be the type of cow that is causing the reactions?  

       There is another group of people who are more sort of "grass roots" that promote the SCD or Specific Carbohydrate Diet, which is a grain free diet higher in fats than most Americans on their carb binges are used to.  I found the link, I think thru one of the alternative MS sites when I was trying to figure out my symptoms as I didn't test out the correct way for MS and the neuro doctors were not ... helpful.  (more like hostile)  When I responded to that diet, I knew it was much more likely I had something food related and it just needed to be refined so I kept testing myself with different elimination variations.  I had had many, many doctors tell me there is no relationship between diet and disease...  sometimes that's wrong.  

      "Toads of Glory, slugs of joy... as he trotted down the path before a dragon ate him"-Alex Hall/ Stop McClintock

      by AmericanRiverCanyon on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 07:37:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  My mother and my aunt were both diagnosed (4+ / 0-)

    with MS in their 20's.

    They were both dead by the age of 40.

    MS scarred the entire family, one way or another.

    Do what you can with what you have where you are - Guild of Maintainers

    by bablhous on Tue Apr 28, 2009 at 07:08:01 PM PDT

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