'MS =' How Do You Put a Face on a Disease that Affects Each Person Differently?

 

Find Out During MS Awareness Week March 14 - 20, 2011

NEW YORK, March 14, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Multiple sclerosis is a life altering disease that affects each person in a unique and different way.   Therefore, to demonstrate the power and importance of the MS movement as a force by and for people living with MS, people all over the nation are coming together during Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Week March 14 – 20 to share, educate and build awareness about what multiple sclerosis means to them.  

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Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system which interrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Symptoms range from reduced or lost mobility to numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis.  The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted.  Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with at least two to three times more women than men having the disease.  MS affects more than 400,000 people in the U.S., and over 2 million worldwide.

Advances in research are moving us closer to stopping the disease, restoring function and ending MS forever.  Moreover, MS has moved from an untreatable disease in 1993 to a treatable one today for the vast majority of people now diagnosed, thanks to the growing public support spurring exciting research breakthroughs.  This is a very encouraging time if you have MS or know someone who lives with the disease because the first oral therapies that treat MS and manage MS symptoms are now available for those with relapsing forms of the disease. This is also a watershed year with more than a dozen therapies moving through the pipeline that hold promise of new and improved treatments for MS. Therefore advancing MS research is ever more important.

This MS Awareness Week and beyond, join the MS movement to end multiple sclerosis.  Find out how you can be a part of the movement to create a world free of MS and learn what MS means to the hundreds of thousands of people living with the daily challenges of MS. The Society is collecting and displaying on its homepage "MS =" responses at www.nationalMSsociety.org

  • Share what MS equals to you at www.nationalMSsociety.org/msequals or on www.facebook.com/nationalmssociety.   If you tweet, you can share what MS means to you with "MS= <insert your own message> to me" using the #MSEquals hashtag. On Flickr, you can upload a photo about what MS = by using MSEquals.
  • Whether you volunteer, bike, walk, advocate, educate, support – every action is a way of moving us closer to a world without multiple sclerosis and shows your commitment to the MS movement.  It also helps to motivate the potentially millions of people who want to, and can, do something about MS now.
  • From the Society's national site you will find ways to build the MS movement. You can even find out how you can share your own video story, download web banners, sign up to participate in or volunteer for Walk MS or Bike MS or some other special event offered by a chapter near you.
  • See and share the "MS =" video on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSsmKbEprUQ


 

The Society is collecting and displaying on its homepage "MS =" responses.    Just a few of the thoughts shared by people you might know:    http://www.nationalmssociety.org/about-multiple-sclerosis/ms-equals/ms-equals-gallery/index.aspx

  • "MS = A family's love and support," states supermodel  Alessandra Ambrosio
  • "MS = Challenges and Victory," stresses author David Baldacci
  • "MS = Exploring possibilities with and for MS," says sports figure  Wendy Booker
  • "MS = Speed bumps,"  quips actor Teri Garr
  • "MS = no opportunity wasted,"  reminds The Amazing Race host, Phil Keoghan
  • "MS = A great dress rehearsal for old age," observes actor/comedian David Lander
  • "MS = Multiple stress, yet multiple solutions," says activist/artist Kathy Lander
  • "MS = Reminding myself that I never really wanted to be a tight rope walker anyway," retorts  actor/comedian Jonathan Katz
  • "MS = A TESTimony," testifies singer Alan Osmond
  • "MS = Focusing on my abilities…not my disabilities," advises singer David Osmond
  • "MS = remembering the quiet daily struggles of dear friends,"  says actor Bill Pullman
  • "MS = Winning the Fight for a Cure," rallies NFL coach Norv Turner
  • "MS = Taking care of my health, so I can take care of the ones I love," offers country music singer/song writer Clay Walker
  • "MS = Relentless pursuit of happiness," says The O'Jays founder/lead singer Walter Williams


 

Support for MS Awareness Week is found in many quarters.  A bipartisan resolution recognizing MS Awareness Week was introduced by both houses of Congress by Senators Kay R. Hagan (NC), Bob Casey (PA) and Olympia Snowe (MA), and Representative Barbara Lee (CA-9).

Thanks also go to corporate sponsors: Clear Channel Communications, Developers Diversified, and Westfield Shopping Centers.

Progress on MS can't wait. Be a part of moving us closer to a world free of multiple sclerosis and in shaping the face of what MS means to you and those you love.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system, interrupts the flow of information within the brain and between the brain and the body. Every hour in the United States, someone is newly diagnosed with the disease. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis.

The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are moving us closer to a world free of MS. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with more than twice as many women as men being diagnosed with the disease. MS affects more than 400,000 people in the U.S. and 2.1 million worldwide.

About the National Multiple Sclerosis Society

MS stops people from moving. The National MS Society exists to make sure it doesn't. We help each person address the challenges of living with MS.  Last year alone, through our national office and 50-state network of chapters, we devoted over $161 million to programs that enhanced more than one million lives. To move us closer to a world free of MS, the Society also invested more than $37 million to support 325 new and ongoing research projects around the world. We are people who want to do something about MS now.  Join the movement at www.nationalMSsociety.org.

SOURCE National Multiple Sclerosis Society



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