CategoryLifestyle and self-management

AAN 2019 posters #3

All good things unfortunately come to an end, and sadly this is the last in the series of three on AAN 2019 posters. What has captured my attention from this years AAN has been the varied interests of the clinician scientists who have presented their work here. This is a good sign, because without varied interests, science and ultimately progress slowly comes to a standstill. I call it the...

Guest post: All Aboard…for your DPRC

Have MS? You are entitled to a Disabled Persons Railcard. End of discussion. If you don’t want to read how or why I know this then just apply here. Explain that you have MS, enclose proof and voila. For £54 over 3 years you and one other enjoy 30% off rail fares at all times. The background to this follows: Being the sort of person that does not like unequal treatment nor the illogicality of...

Guest post: Social Prescribing – the first exploratory meeting.

Dr Saul Reyes, a neurologist from Colombia, is working with the Barts MS team for a year and is exploring the concept of social prescribing and the possibility of incorporating it into the Barts MS service. To kick-start this he spoke to the MS Advisory Group in February earlier this year. He then set up a meeting with Alyson McGregor the National Director of an organization called Altogether...

A new UK MS and pregnancy register

We know that MS is most often diagnosed in women, and at an age when many people will not have completed, or started, their families when they receive their diagnosis. Becoming pregnant is of course a life-changing event for a woman. For a woman living with MS, becoming pregnant comes with many more questions and considerations. There are so many questions that someone with MS might want the...

The new black death is ageing

I say to many of patients one of the most powerful predictors of progressive, or more correctly worsening, MS is ageing. Age also predicts recovery of function; the younger you are the better you do. This study shows that ageing restricts the ability of stem cells to make oligodendrocytes to promote remyelination. As you are aware age also predicts response, or lack or response, to DMTs. The...

Guest post: Part four of choosing a DMT

When in the police, many years ago, I went into some shocking situations. As a middle-class lad I often struggled to even understand how people could live like this. You’d never know it from external appearances with many people. If you want to gain confidence you rapidly learn to communicate at an entirely different level and understand the huge differences in interpretation of information and...

Fatigue in MS – what we don’t know?

Fatigue in MS is a strange duck, on many levels obvious and frequently described by PwMS (80-90%), but one that lacks sound medical explanation and science doesn’t even know how to test it yet. I was sure that the fatigue in MS, particularly exercise induced fatigue, was somehow related to the conduction block caused by the demyelination in the long tracts (corticospinal tract). It would...

Exercise, exercise, exercise ….

If you live in London it is impossible not to have gotten caught up in London-Marathon fever over the weekend. Eliud Kipchoge won the London marathon in the second fastest recorded time  (two hours two minutes 38 seconds). Interestingly, Kipchoge wears an electric blue band on his wrist, where four simple words are written: “No human is limited”. He has obviously not met someone with...

Old age; how is it going to affect me?

Is ageing a disease? It is if you have MS. We have been making the argument for moving our treatment target in MS to focus on old age; i.e. how do we your HCPs get you to old age with enough brain to deal with the ravages of age-related cognitive impairment? Mechanisms of neuronal loss in MS It is clear that your brain and cognitive reserves are what protects you from the ‘normal age-related...

Guest post: Social capital and social prescribing

I was having a chat with a friend a few days ago. He said “I have heard people talking about social capital and social prescribing. I don’t really know what they mean, do you?” “Umm, not too easy”, I said. “I know it’s nothing to do with money, it’s not measurable and it’s all to do with your quality of life”. “Sounds interesting”! He wanted to know more but I could not really help him right then...

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