Updated: Mar 22
Katie had Multiple Sclerosis but decided to keep fighting for a quality life. Katie was my sister with a whole life ahead of her. She worked through law school and passed her bar exam. She practiced and was a notable attorney. Katie was attacked in a courtroom when she prosecuted parents who abused her children. If you want more brutal truths, I am happy to tell you. Katie was misdiagnosed and had to go through spinal taps and learn how to give herself needle medication. She was then prescribed pain medication for her final diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis.
As explained by the National Multiple Sclerosis organization (2017),
Multiple sclerosis (MS) involves an immune-mediated process in which an abnormal response of the body’s immune system is directed against the central nervous system (CNS), which is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. The exact antigen — or target that the immune cells are sensitized to attack — remains unknown, which is why MS is considered by many experts to be "immune-mediated" rather than "autoimmune."
As witnessed in my loved one, there were many tests, trial-and-error medications, and follow-up tests. As also observed in the past, it can be frustrating to watch a family member struggle with unmanaged symptoms and experience such routine, timely, and costly follow-up treatments which are ongoing for years in time. One can only imagine what the patient goes through indefinitely. This is not an isolated disease. This multi-layered complex story is summarized by stating the medical community needs further research and each patient needs empathetic care.
There were some talks of trial treatments but the research still needs to be ongoing for one affected by the disease symptoms to manage a quality of life. Katie was not so lucky with the outcome but others can be. The power is in research and education. As a walk has been coordinated in many locations all over the country some events can be joined. There is an upcoming event in Rensselaer, NY. For more information on this walk, you can visit Counselor Team Angel Kate's page to participate in the event and be a part of the positive event.
In speaking with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society we have been informed by Kyla Manny (2017),
Last year alone, the Society invested $42 million to support more than 380 new and ongoing research projects around the world. There are more potential MS therapies in development today than at any other time in history, and a variety of therapies exist, largely for those with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis.
Your participation can go a long way. Further comments by Manny are valid. "There is a lot of hope out there. Research breakthroughs fuel the treatments and solutions people with MS need to overcome the challenges of MS today" (Manny, personal communications, 2017). We appreciate you participating in someone else’s quality of life. The walk is on May 21, 2017, at Tri-City Valley Cats Stadium, 80 Vandenburgh Ave, Troy, NY 12180. For more information, you may contact Kyla Manny at (518) 464-0923 ext. 70402 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
National Multiple Sclerosis Society. (2017). Retrieved from http://www.nationalmssociety.org/What-is-MS/Definition-of-MS