All About Multiple Sclerosis

More MS news articles for March 2003

Striking Back At MS

3rd February 2003

It can strike like lightning. One day you're fine, the next you can't see properly or your leg gives way from under you. Multiple sclerosis strikes at random, usually in the prime of life. It is the most common potentially disabling neurological disease affecting young people in the western world. Around 50 are diagnosed in the UK every week.

'Striking back' is the theme the Multiple Sclerosis Society has chosen for its 50th anniversary year, which includes MS Week from 6 to 13 April 2003. The Society is the UK's largest organisation for people affected by MS and a leading funder of research into its cause and cure.

Says chief executive, Mike O'Donovan, "Like a lightning bolt from the blue, MS is totally unpredictable. You just don't know how it's going to hit you. Some people hardly notice they have it. Some have serious problems with sight, mobility, co-ordination, continence, pain and fatigue which come and go. Others quickly become severely disabled.

"We want to reach out to more people affected by MS than ever before and show them the many ways we can offer support. At the same time we want everyone to understand just what it's like to live with MS and ask them to help us to improve and extend the range of services we can offer."

Mr O’Donovan highlighted a number of current Society activities and initiatives:

Notes to Editors

The Multiple Sclerosis Society of Great Britain and Northern Ireland was founded in 1953 by Richard (later Sir Richard) Cave, whose wife, Mary, had MS.  This followed an approach from Sylvia Lawry, who founded the world’s first MS Society in the United States.  The inaugural meeting was at the Chenil Galleries in King’s Road, Chelsea on 2 December 1953.

MS Birthday Cake Break Day is Friday 11 April 2003.

On Saturday 26 April 2003 Simon Cave (65), son of the founder, will set out on a sponsored ‘one million steps for MS’ walk from the Forth Bridge in Scotland to Tower Bridge in London.

Donations to the Society can be made by post to: MS Society. MS National Centre, 372 Edgware Road, London NW2 6ND or via the website  The website also carries information about fundraising events and volunteering.

Ten Quick Facts about MS

David Harrison or Adrian Ellis
Harrison Bergman Limited
020 7838 2680 or 07836 523495(mobile)

© 2003, Multiple Sclerosis Society