Yay, it’s March! This month spring returns and with that hopefully the warmth and the sun, buds on the trees and birds singing outside.
March is also Multiple Sclerosis Awareness month, so I thought I would start off by sharing some facts.
MS is a neurological condition cause by an autoimmunity which makes ones body attack the myelin, the protective coating around the nerve cells. The cause of MS is still unknown. You can develop MS at any age, but most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40 – I was 32 when I got my diagnosis and 30 when I started experiencing symptoms.
MS affects more than 2.3 million people around the world and the the ratio of women with MS to men is 2 to 1.
There are four “types” of MS.
1. Relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) – this is what I was diagnosed with; it is defined by episodes of increased or worsening symptoms, followed by periods of remission with no progression.
2. Untreated, about 50 percent of people with RRMS transition to secondary-progressive MS (SPMS) within a decade of the initial diagnosis.
3. People with Primary-progressive MS (PPMS) experience a steady progression of the disease with no clear relapses or remissions.
4. Progressive-relapsing MS (PRMS) is the rarest form of MS with about 5 percent of people with this type. People with PRMS have clear relapses combined with a steady progression of the disease.
Many people with MS do not become severely disabled and experience a normal lifespan. MS can be managed with disease modifying drugs, diet and exercise.
I am due to see my neurologist in the next couple of months. I haven’t had an MRI since my initial diagnosis. I feel good, I do not think there has been any progression and I am hopeful that I’ve actually had some healing – I’ll talk more about that soon!