My Multiple Sclerosis



Iím often asked how my MS is.I appreciate your asking.This write-up is not to be construed that Iím tired of the question!But in case youíre wondering and Iím not around to ask, hereís the current state of my MS:


When I was diagnosed in September of 2003, my main symptoms were


1)     I had some problems enunciating some words.They would get a little caught sometimes.Not that I couldnít think of a word, just that it would come out a little distorted or I would have a hard time getting it out.


2)     When I would pan my eyes to the left (not the right), I could only move them a little more than halfway, then they would start to shake.


Thatís mainly all I noticed.Not bad, considering the list of symptoms most MS patients experience.


Today, I still have those symptoms, but they are not quite as bad.I have some new ones, however:


1)     The coordination in my right hand (but not my left) is getting pretty bad Ė maybe 50% as bad as it used to be (if itís even quantifiable at all).My handwriting, particularly cursive, is getting a little hard to read Ė maybe like a typical man now!


2)     My balance is not great.I do a lot of little ďmini-staggersĒ, almost as if Iíve had too much to drink (which is ironic, since I donít drink alcohol at all)!I have to be a little careful when I hike next to a drop-off or cross a stream on a log or rocks.


3)     My right leg and right arm are getting a little uncoordinated, especially when I run.When I ran the L.A. Marathon last month, what bothered me more than anything was that my right arm got very tired!So I would tuck it into my side periodically.If I try to wave my right arm when running, it flops around very uncoordinatedly.


4)     I get dizzy when I turn my head certain ways or turn it when Iím bent over.


5)     My ears ring almost constantly, although itís gotten a little better lately.Iíve also been told by an audiologist that I have mild to moderate hearing loss in the upper frequencies, which I donít know whether or not itís related.


6)     I get pretty fatigued so I take a 30-minute nap at noon almost every day, although when Iím not working I usually get a full 8 hours of sleep and donít seem to need the nap most days.


7)     My MRI shows that one of my lesions has gotten a little worse, which kinda makes sense based on the way I feel.


But I still have to say, that all these problems are very mild.I consider myself very fortunate, considering the horrible things that MS can do to people.And I know very well that my MS can (and probably will) get progressively worse (at least a little).But for now, itís just a minor inconvenience (knock on wood!).