November 21, 2013

MS Sucks. Don’t you agree?


For the past few years I’ve been raising money for the fight against Multiple Sclerosis.

It’s a crazy, miserable, underfunded disease that currently has no known cause and no known cure. The body turns on itself and attacks connections in the brain and spinal cord, causing disability all over the body. It is an unpredictable disease because it takes different forms depending where it strikes – vision, mobility, speech, bladder, memory… These disabilities range in severity as well. It could be as bad as tingling in the legs or complete paralysis. Some victims have symptoms that all or mostly go away after a while but some last. There is no indicator when or to what part of the body a new attack will happen.

It affects both men and women (though far more women) and generally starts between the ages 20 and 50 and lasts for the rest of life. Multiple Sclerosis isn’t fatal.  While it doesn’t shorten life expectancy, it certainly robs victims of life’s simple pleasures – walking, picking up grandkids, seeing… As people with this disease age, the severity turns progressive and symptoms persist.

It’s a scary disease and needs far more research. Please help me in stopping Multiple Sclerosis. I wear my I Run to Stop MS for all of my races and partner with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society in this fight.

Please donate what you can. Big or small will make a difference.

Donate here.

A million thanks,

A few facts:

• Multiple sclerosis affects 250,000 to 350,000 people in the United States; about 2 million people are affected worldwide.
• About 200 new cases of MS are diagnosed in the U.S. every week.
• MS is the most common chronic disabling disease of the central nervous system in young adults.
• MS affects 1 in 1000 people in Western countries.
• The most common attacks involve:
     – vision: blurring of vision, double vision (diplopia), optic neuritis, involuntary rapid eye movement, total loss of sight.
     – coordination: loss of balance, tremor, unstable walking (ataxia), vertigo, clumsiness of a limb, lack of coordination, paralysis
     – fatigue
     – speech and swallowing: slowing of speech, slurring of words, changes in rhythm of speech
     – bladder and bowel control
     – sexuality: impotence, diminished arousal, loss of sensation.
     – cognitive function: problems with short-term memory, concentration, judgment or reasoning
• There is no “typical case” of MS. They are all different.
• The cause of MS is still unknown. It may be caused by a virus, although it is unlikely that there is just one MS virus.

Philly half marathon 2010
I run to stop MS
Chicago half marathon 2011
I run to stop MS
Disneyworld full marathon 2012
I run to stop MS
With Paul, the leader of Philly’s I Run to Stop MS team, KarmaStriders, before the 2013 Philly half marathon this past weekend.
I run to stop MS

I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something I can do. 
~ Edward Everett Hale

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