Tuesday, 5 August 2003
Presenter: Chris Coleman
Researcher: Georgie Klug
ABC Western Plains NSW
What do the following people (both real and fictional) have in common?
Actor and Comedian Richard Pryor.
Multiple Olympic Gold Medallist Betty Cuthbert.
Actor David Lander (Squiggy from 'Laverne and Shirley').
President Josiah Bartlet from 'The West Wing' TV show.
If you answered 'Multiple Sclerosis' or 'MS' then go to the top of the class. But even with high-profile sufferers, MS remains a mystery to many.
In an effort to help people diagnosed with MS, and those close to them, gain a better understanding of the disease, and the support services available, a free book 'What is MS?' has been written and developed by Australian MS specialists.
With over 10,000 Australians diagnosed with the disease, MS Nurse Consultant at Melbourne's Austin Hospital, Jennifer Coleman, says the book is designed to give people the information they need to help them cope with the disease.
She says there are still many mysteries with MS. For example, people who spend their childhood in a cooler climate have an increased likelihood of contracting Multiple Sclerosis, but scientists still don't know why this is so. Another mystery of the disease is that not all cases of MS are the same, and the disease can have different effects on the one patient over time.
Ms. Coleman says even though the cause, or causes, of MS aren't known, and there is still no cure, treatment for the disease has come a very long way, even in the last seven or eight years.
Listen to the interview (Requires Real
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