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'multiple sclerosis' posts

October Pet of the Month at the Multiple Sclerosis Center

A (Slightly) New Medication for Multiple Sclerosis Comes Out in November

Interferons have been used for the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS) since 1993. The existing line-up of interferons for MS (Avonex, Betaseron, Extavia and Rebif) will soon be joined by Plegridy, approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in August 2014. Plegridy will become commercially available in November 2014.

Plegridy is a pegylated form of interferon beta. Pegylation is a process, used by several other non-MS medications, whereby a long string of polyethylene glycol molecules is attached to the interferon beta molecule, to extend its half-life by reducing clearance via kidneys or other elimination pathways in the body. This modification allows less frequent dosing of Plegridy – once every two weeks – although it is still administered as an injection under the skin.

In the ADVANCE trial, Plegridy was ..

Getting the most out of your appointment

I was recently asked if I could provide advice on how patients could get the most out of their Swedish Multiple Sclerosis Center visits.  In reality, I think most of us have been patients at least once in our lives. The list of tips I provide is comprehensive. However, critical information may be missing.  If you notice omissions, please respond with your own advice in the comments since we can all learn from each other.
 
One of the most important MS life survival lessons is that we are all part of the same team. As a member of that team, our goal is to equip you with the knowledge and skills to live your life to the fullest. This starts with the MS Center visit. Where you go with the information, is all part of our journey together:

Just Keep Moving: Carolyn Phelps completes Ironman 70.3 in Lake Stevens

A dedicated eighth grade math teacher, wife, and mother of two, Carolyn Phelps did not exactly have the schedule to accommodate triathlon training. But after persuasion from her triathlete neighbor, Carolyn embarked on a year of intense training in order to compete in the Half Ironman in Lake Stevens, Washington this past month. Diagnosed with MS two years earlier, Carolyn made the decision to "keep moving." Competing in an Ironman event was not on her list of things to do a couple of years ago, but with her new diagnosis, she made her mind up to just move. "I don't want it to pass me by," she said. "We want to set a positive example for our children. This was a lifestyle decision, not an event," she explained.

Carolyn is the first to say she never could have succeeded without her family's support. Long runs and late night swims at the local pool caused Carolyn to commit to a tight schedule. Her husband and children were with her every step of the way "Picking up the slack," she said, "and eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches some nights when she could not make it home for dinner." She still gets emotional about it. "I just had so much support."

In preparation for the event, Carolyn's training consisted of  ....

Gray Matter Myelin Loss Linked to Severity of Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms

In a recent collaborative study completed by the Swedish Multiple Sclerosis Center, University of Washington, and University of Wisconsin, doctors discovered through a more refined magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) process, the amount of myelin lost in the gray matter of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients’ brains may indicate a more severe form of the disease.
 
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) has long ...

Advances in Vision Assessment in Multiple Sclerosis

Over the past several years, the visual function of people living with multiple sclerosis (MS) has been increasingly recognized as an important marker of quality of life in MS, and as a useful indicator of the severity and activity of MS both clinically, and in MS research. Measurement of a person’s ability to see faded letters (low contrast acuity) has been found to be an excellent marker of MS visual function, and its change over time is related to MS disease activity. Optical coherence tomography (OCT), which measures the health of optic nerves and retinas in individuals with MS, is providing an explosion of data that has increased our insight into the extent, course, and pathology of multiple sclerosis.
 
At this year’s North American Neuro-ophthalmology Society meeting, data was presented on another technique that is being developed and refined for use in the MS population, a questionnaire about visual quality of life.  The ..

Dr. James Bowen to speak about Multiple Sclerosis at Tacoma Science Cafe

Join us for a talk and casual discussion at the next Tacoma Science Cafe.
 
Speaker:          Dr. James Bowen, M.D., MS Center Neurologist and Medical Director
 
Talk:                Multiple Sclerosis in the Pacific Northwest
 
Date:               Tuesday, September 9
 
Time:               6:30 p.m.
 
Location ....

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