Friday, June 14, 2024

World Multiple Sclerosis Day

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Maria Gill
Maria Gill
"Subtly charming problem solver. Extreme tv enthusiast. Web scholar. Evil beer expert. Music nerd. Food junkie."

World Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Day is held on May 30 every year. This year’s theme is Diagnosis.

Do you know this disease that affects approximately one in 400 people and is also called the disease of a thousand faces? Here are some facts:

  • In Lanaudiere, there are an estimated 1,200 people living with the degenerative autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system. If we count our loved ones who will inevitably be affected, we can say that several thousand Llanoders are affected by MS.
  • The cause of the disease is still unknown.
  • 3 times more than men with MS.
  • The most common symptom of the disease is fatigue, but there is a wide range of symptoms (numbness, vision disturbances, muscle weakness, cognitive problems, etc.).
  • Some of these symptoms are invisible and can be misinterpreted by those around you, which can be a source of friction or even conflict.
  • The disease develops in bouts of flare-ups with stages of remission.
  • There are medications to slow the progression of the disease and reduce symptoms, but it is not yet a cure.

Diagnosing the disease is difficult because there are no specific tests. The methods used are magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), evoked potentials, and lumbar puncture. The diagnosis must meet very precise criteria, and can only be made after all other possible causes of the symptoms observed have been eliminated.

Improving the situation will include better training and awareness of MS among healthcare professionals, as well as new research and clinical advances in MS diagnosis.

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For nearly 40 years, the Lanaudière Multiple Sclerosis Association has been working by, for and with Lanaudière residents living with MS to achieve its mission of improving their living conditions.

The only independent community-based organization in the region recognized and funded by the Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services to support people with MS, ASEPL supports these people throughout their journey with the disease.

All donations received are 100% dedicated to member services and remain in the district.

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