The week of March 3-9, 2014, was MS Awareness Week during MS Awareness Month. The theme for this year's Awareness Month is "MS Counts."
According to an article by Jeri Burtchell on Healthline.com, the year 1945 was a significant one for those with multiple sclerosis. Sylvia Lawry had multiple sclerosis.
Lawry took out a New York Times ad that said, "Multiple Sclerosis: Will anyone recovered from it please communicate with patient."
Apparently she had a good response to her ad. In March 1946, Lawry founded an organization which would become the National MS Society.
The Society's president and CEO Cynthia Zagieboylo told Healthline, “March has become the cross-organizational month to bring awareness to MS-related issues.”
The Multiple Sclerosis Association of America (MSAA) and the Multiple Sclerosis International Federation (MSIF) have joined forces with the National MS Society among other groups to bring attention to MS around the world.
The ultimate goal for these organizations is to vanquish MS.
More than 1,000 people with MS have told their personal stories, with their photos, on the National MS Society's website www.MSconnection.org/
Multiple sclerosis attacks the central nervous system. The myelin sheath (the nerves' protective covering) is damaged. Communication between brain and nerve pathways is decreased. Visual difficulties, exhaustion, balance and coordination problems, and reduced mobility often result.
In the 20 years since the first MS therapy was introduced, 10 more approved treatments have appeared that keep MS from progressing and that can make attacks less frequent. Research into genetic and immune response, as well as study for the development of medications for nerve regeneration are ongoing.
It's the number one neurological disorder for young adults. The number of people with MS is in the hundreds of thousands in the United States, and it is 2.5 million around the world.
The national nonprofit organization Multiple Sclerosis Association of America (MSAA) encourages people to do their bit in raising community awareness of MS in order to improve the lot of those with MS.