Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Flo Fox, one of my MS heroes

Have you seen this short documentary yet? It's awesome. Living with Multiple Sclerosis since age 30, Flo Fox never let it stop her from doing what she loves most: taking photographs. Please take a moment to watch the clip, you'll be glad you did. And Flo? Thanks for being such an incredible hero for me. Hugs!


Saturday, October 12, 2013

Stop smoking and get some Vitamin D, a theme from ECTRIMS

The sun vitamin has an impact
on the course of our MS
(c) cgermans photography, 2013
One of the three themes discussed during this year’s ECTRIMS (European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis) was the “Environmental Triggers” of Multiple Sclerosis. Not surprising, more studies reveal that Vitamin D has an impact on disease course and smoking is really bad for our health, more so for our MS health.
Geez. This makes me wonder, “Good Grief!  Did I get MS because I was addicted to cigarettes for ten years?” Good thing I quite my habit of a pack a day of Marlboro Lights. And, while I am not necessarily getting more sun, I did start taking a daily dose of Vitamin D supplements. Hopefully this gets me on track to lessen the impact of my MS.
So, have a watch of this video, which features three prominent doctors in neurology. Dr. Lublin, Dr. Fox and Dr Wilner discuss the top advances in MS and the most interesting ECTRIMS presentations. You'll have to sign up on Medscape.com to watch the flick but it’s a good update on the chatter of this year’s event. 

Click here to watch the video: Top Advances in MS highlighted from ECTRMIS 2013.
Best always,
Ascherio A, Munger K, White R, et al. Vitamin D as a predictor of multiple sclerosis activity and progression. Program and abstracts of the 29th Congress of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis; October 2-5, 2013; Copenhagen, Denmark. Abstract 96.
Hedström AK, Hillert J, Olsson T, Alfredsson L. Smoking and multiple sclerosis susceptibility. Program and abstracts of the 29th Congress of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis; October 2-5, 2013; Copenhagen, Denmark. Abstract 118.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Judy and Sophie's Story

From time to time we come across amazing stories and this one is no exception. Watch this video which captures the story of Judy, who lives with MS, and Sophie, a six pound capuchin monkey who helps her. I love what her husband says part way through the video, when he and Judy read on the web, "If you'd like a monkey, send us an email." Helping Hands? Keep up the great work!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Do you live a double life?

It’s hard living with a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis and even harder deciphering when to “come out” - who to tell, how and when. For me, telling my loved ones is easy and I’m very fortunate as I’ve read stories about how many MSers struggle with this, not getting the right level of emotional and physical support from friends and family. I feel lucky.

At work, however, I do not talk about my life with MS. So I’ve chosen to live a double life. By day, I work in an office (think Dilbert) amongst colleagues who do not know about my health status. By night, I live with MS amongst those who love and support me. 

It is exhausting being a secret agent. Hiding out in empty cubicles to make phone calls to my neurologist and discreetly leaving early for infusion, MRI and doctor appointments can be super difficult to cover up but I have chosen to hide my mission: do not reveal the MS diagnosis at work.

Read more about how challenging it can be to ensure my cover isn’t blown on Multiple Sclerosis.net. How has coming out with your diagnosis been with your friends and family? Work? Or, do you live a double life like I do?

Best always

Agent C.

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