Marion County Multiple Sclerosis Self-Help Group, Ocala, Florida

Enjoying Life One Day at a Time!

Complementary Treatments for MS
Have you tried any alternative or complementary treatments for your MS? Some options, like acupuncture for spasticity, vitamin D supplements, and diet and exercise changes, have proven beneficial for those with MS. In our new slideshow about complementary treatments for MS you will find helpful information about how these therapies work alongside your traditional treatments, how to know if a complementary treatment is safe and effective and how to talk openly and honestly with your doctor about integrating complementary therapies into your treatment plan. You’ll also get step-by-step instructions for trying each of these approaches, adding supplements to your diet or starting a new exercise routine. Plus, you’ll get a glimpse inside research being done on the safety and efficacy of complementary therapies and efforts underway to make these treatments mainstream.

Geographical Clusters of MS
Several of my family members and people who grew up in our neighborhood have MS. How can I find out if there are any studies being conducted about the high incidence of MS in my area?
Read the doctor's answer

Causes of MS: Did a Virus Make You Sick?
According to the leading theory, an unknown environmental factor may play a role in determining who gets MS. Tune in June 26 as experts explore research which suggests that viruses are to blame.
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Treating MS: Oral Therapy Update
Would you rather take a pill to treat your MS than injections? Learn about the first oral drugs in clinical trial, how effective they are, what side effects they have and when they'll be available.
Listen to the replay

Benefits of Personalized Medication
Could your genes be the key to reducing side effects and the number of meds you take? Tune in May 28 as experts discuss personalized medicine, where genetic variations help tailor treatment plans.
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MS and Your Autoimmune Disorder Risk
Did you know one in five people have an autoimmune disorder, and that having MS puts you at greater risk of developing others? Trevis shares surprising information about the autoimmune connection.
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MS Postcard , Ask the Doctor, Shows, Blogs

MS Postcard Blog
MS Postcard: Fearing MS
Do you feel like MS is just around every corner, waiting to attack? The creator of one of our MS Postcard Blogs shares these anxious feelings with an analogy of Little Red Riding Hood being tracked by a big, bad wolf waiting to ambush her. Whether you're commenting on other members' postcards or submitting one of your own, this is a place to let loose every thought and feeling you've felt forbidden to share since you or a loved one was diagnosed.

Treating Without ABCRs
Instead of a standard disease-modifying drug, I take steroids and immune-suppressing drugs to treat my MS. Is this an effective treatment plan?
Read the doctor's answer

Will Your Child Get MS?
Some people with MS avoid having children or feel conflicted doing so knowing that they might pass on their MS. Tune in December 13 to learn about the role genetics play in the development of MS.
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The Future of MS
From oral therapies to stem cell research, MS has made the news many times in 2007. Find out what progress has been made this year and what is still to come.
Listen to the replay

Will Red Wine Help You Live Longer?
Mice who drink wine may live longer, but what about people? Tune in to HealthTalk Live! on Wednesday to find out what’s in the wine and how much is safe to add to your diet.
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How Would You Improve Your MS Care?
Trevis has a chance to offer his opinions about how to better serve MS patients, and he wants to know what your clinic can do better for you.
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MS and Being Thankful
In light of the holiday season, Trevis tries to be thankful for the good things in his life, but sometimes finds it hard while living with MS. How do you stay positive?
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Year in Review
As the year comes to a close, Trevis recaps what has happened in the world of MS. Find out what's been accomplished, and what you can expect to see in 2008.
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MS Related Bladder Problems

Treating MS-Related Bladder Problems If you or someone you love is living with MS, you probably already know that MS-related bladder problems are an annoying and painful reality. According to Dr. Ellen Lathi, who writes our Ask the Doctor column, up to 80 percent of people with MS have some symptoms of bladder dysfunction. Fortunately, there are several options for dealing with these symptoms including oral medications, temporary and permanent catheters, and, in extreme circumstances, reconstructive surgery. To learn more about these treatment options and to find out which may relieve your bladder symptoms, read on.

The Future of MS
From oral therapies to stem cell research, MS has made the news many times in 2007. Tune in November 27 and find out what progress has been made this year and what is still to come.
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Stem Cells and MS
Looking for a better treatment option? Find out how stem cell transplants have been proven to treat MS, where they’re still falling short and why political debate threatens this research.
Listen to the replay

Your Memory Muscle
Your memory is like a muscle that needs strengthening. Tune in to HealthTalk Live! on Wednesday as experts explain how your memory works and how to keep it strong.
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Tired of MS: Negative Thoughts
Being tired and frustrated is a normal part of life with MS, and talking about these feelings can be cathartic. Trevis shares his feelings and encourages you to do the same.
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Focusing on Gratitude, Not MS
Trevis decides to start each day by listing the things he feels grateful for instead of focusing on what MS has taken from him. What are you grateful for?
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Vitamin D Benefits
A little time spent in the sunshine each day can have positive long-term effects, especially for people with MS. Trevis talks about the benefits of vitamin D and how a short walk each day can make you feel better in the long run.
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Oral Treatment for MS, Stem Cells for MS, Tysabri, Pushing Treaqtments Through

Oral Treatment for MS If you or someone you love has MS, you're probably counting the days until an oral treatment replaces injections. This dream may soon be a reality. According to Dr. Ellen Lathi, who writes for our Ask the Doctor column, trials are underway for oral cladribine, an immunosuppressive medication, to see how effective it is and whether it can safely be used as a method of treatment. Previous studies using cladribine intravenously in patients with MS have shown a decrease in relapses and new lesions on the brain, results which researchers now hope to achieve in pill form. To learn more about this treatment, or to ask a question of your own, read on.

Stem Cells and MS
Looking for a better treatment option? Tune in October 25 to find out how stem cell transplants have been proven to treat MS, where they’re still falling short, and why political debate threatens this research.
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Overhaul Your Treatment Plan
Stakes are high for those living with MS. Experts explain how to be sure you’re using all the protection available against a life with disability.
Listen to the replay

Reduce Your Stroke Risk
Strokes can severely change the way you live your life. Tune in to HealthTalk Live! on Wednesday to learn about the risk factors and how to avoid them.
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Tysabri Rebound
Trevis is concerned about reports that patients who discontinued Tysabri (natalizumab) were found to have more lesions on MRI, but a blog reader points out another study with contradicting results. What do you make of this controversial data?
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Pushing Treatments Through
MS patients are in desperate need of more drug choices, but the FDA approval process is grueling. Trevis talks about an organization that is working to speed up the process and get MS drugs to market more quickly.
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Helping Hands
Trevis isn’t shy about asking friends and family for help when he needs it. How comfortable are you asking for help when MS makes everyday tasks difficult?
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Dear Jean,

Here's the latest from the HealthTalk Multiple Sclerosis Community:

Live Show Two Weeks Away:
Strategies for Living Well with MS

From keeping track of injection schedules to accommodating fatigue and mobility issues, those living with multiple sclerosis have to deal with aspects of the disease every day. in on Thursday, January 25 as our expert panel explores strategies for dealing with day-to-day issues of life with MS and living a happier, fuller life.

And, as always, you'll get a chance to ask the experts your questions.

BONUS: Didn’t get everything on your holiday list this year? Attend this show live online for your chance to win one of five $50 gift certificates and check off your list!

Register now

Transcript: 30 Minutes of Q&A
with Nurse Piper

In our recent show, MS expert Nurse Piper Paul answered audience questions for a full half-hour.

Check out the transcript to hear answers to questions about:

Ask the Doctor: Bladder and Bowel Complications

In our regular Ask the Doctor column, Dr. Pat Parcells answers your questions on multiple sclerosis, including:

  • Muscle tightness makes it difficult to pass urine and stool. What's the best way to treat this?

Submit your own questions and check back each week for new answers.

Read the Ask the Doctor column

HealthTalk Blogs: MS Role Call,
New Year's Resolutions and More

Part news, part opinion and part community bulletin boards - the HealthTalk Blogs are always full of interesting points of discussion. In addition to recent posts in the multiple sclerosis blog, you may be particularly interested in our bloggers' thoughts on:

Don't just read the blogs - participate! Share your stories and perspectives on any of the blog topics by posting a comment.

Browse the blogs

Wednesday on HealthTalk Live!:
Political Patients

Each week on HealthTalk Live!, Judy Foreman explores a new general health topic that matters to you. Tune in on Wednesday nights at 8:30 p.m. Eastern (5:30 p.m. Pacific) at the HealthTalk Live! Web site. next show will be Political Patients on January 17. Vocal patients can have a real impact on public policy, research funding, and even future treatment options. Tune in to find out why patient advocacy works and how to get involved. Send your questions and stories now to HealthTalkLive@HealthTalkcom.

And be sure to check out our recent replays:

  • Fitness for Everyone
  • Navigating Health News on the Internet
  • The Food/Health Relationship

To get details about upcoming shows sent right to your inbox, sign up for our weekly reminder e-mail.

Visit HealthTalk Live!

Ask Dr. Z: Psychologist vs. Psychiatrist

Psychologist vs. Psychiatrist – what’s the difference? Find out who fits your mental health bill. In this new video series, Dr. Ed Zimney answers questions on general healthcare topics.

mailto: Question for Dr. Z – HealthTalk Multiple Sclerosis CommunityDo you have a general healthcare question that's been on your mind? Perhaps you'd like to know how to tell the difference between allergies and colds, or wondered how to stop the hiccups. Send your questions now to and stay tuned for the next video in this series.

This is not the place to get specific information relating to your disease – please consult your own doctor for that information.

Watch the video

We wish you and your family the best of health!

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Please contact Jean with any stories or info. you'd like shared with others.

Contact:  Jean McGrail, Facilitator        (352) 207-4251


               Debbie Dann, Co-Facilitator