Multiple Sclerosis Day
May 30 is World Multiple Sclerosis Day, which encourages discussion about the disease. Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, progressive disease in which nerve insulating covers are damaged. In addition to muscle weakness, double vision, and mental/physical problems, MS is also known as encephalomyelitis disseminata. Researchers are still unsure of the exact cause of the disease due to a lack of research studies. Scientists believe there might be a connection between genetics and/or nerve-cell dysfunction and the onset of the disease. Currently, there is no permanent cure. Treatment and medication can alleviate the symptoms.
According to the Multiple Sclerosis International Federation, Multiple Sclerosis is one of the most common diseases of the central nervous system, affecting more than 2.3 million people worldwide. Multiple sclerosis means “many scars,” a reference to the areas that appear on the brain and spinal cord after the myelin covering our nerves is damaged or dies. Damaged myelin leaves a lesion behind. MRI tests can identify these lesions when symptoms begin to appear. MS symptoms vary and progress at different rates for everyone. The disease is unpredictable, progressive, and hard to diagnose. MS symptoms vary and progress at different rates for everyone. The disease is unpredictable, progressive, and hard to diagnose.
While there is no cure, treatments are advancing to help slow the progression of MS and reduce the symptoms. As with many conditions, education, research, and funding are necessary.
History of Multiple Sclerosis Day
There has been a World Multiple Sclerosis Day since 2009 when the Multiple Sclerosis International Federation (MSIF) celebrated its first World Multiple Sclerosis Day. The MSIF was officially established in 1967 as an international body that coordinated closely with national MS organizations in a number of countries, including Turkey, Slovakia, India, and the United States.
MSIF spends the whole month of May and early June spreading awareness and hope about MS through their themed campaigns.