Revealing the Mysteries behind Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)The Multiple Sclerosis Association of America is proud to introduce the latest edition of The Motivator, available now in both print and digital editions! This edition’s cover story, “Revealing the Mysteries behind Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI),” covers how an MRI works, what it shows, the challenges it presents, and how the MRI is used to monitor disease activity.

Read an excerpt from our cover story here:


MS can sometimes be “clinically silent,” where active lesions are not causing any symptoms. However at other times, certain lesions observed through an MRI correspond specifically to some type of dysfunction, depending on where the lesion is located. For instance, a lesion on the optic nerve may cause optic neuritis, while a lesion on the brainstem can cause vertigo and/or double vision.

Lesions along the spinal cord cause very specific symptoms depending on their location, but in general, these typically relate to either motor (movement) or sensory (sensation) problems. When lesions occur within the anterior (front) portion of the spinal cord, motor or movement functions are affected. Difficulty with coordination and strength with moving one’s arms or walking are examples of symptoms that may occur. When lesions occur within the posterior (back) portion of the spinal cord, sensory problems are more likely. These might include numbness, tingling, burning, and/or loss of feeling, month other sensory issues.


Continue reading the cover story at support.mymsaa.org/motivator to learn more about MRI technology and how that helps monitor MS activity.

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Relapses in RRMS, SPMS, and PPMS

MS Under the Surface - MS Relapse

Although each individual’s journey with MS can be incredibly varied, there is one common factor experienced by nearly all individuals with MS at some point throughout their journey with the condition: relapse. Relapses are all too common for individuals across varying types of MS, despite common misconceptions. Contrary to the names of the various types of MS, relapses can Continue reading

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Voting… It’s a Big Deal

There are lots of things that occur in the world that we don’t speak about. We could spend the better part of any day listing all the things that currently see our families, friends and neighbors at odds. Don’t worry, I won’t pester you with a list… I know you’re probably already more than aware of them anyway. But one that I did want to shed light on, for a moment if I may, is voting. Continue reading

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My Life with Multiple Sclerosis… I Got This

Life with Multiple Sclerosis...I Got This

By Penelope Conway

No one likes to think about where multiple sclerosis may lead…not even me. But I can tell you from my own experience, ignoring the possibilities of progression is to live in denial and will only set you up for defeat. Trust me, I lived there my first year after diagnosis.

I chose to deny what was happening in my life because I was afraid of the unknown. Continue reading

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Acceptance is a Myth

Accepting multiple sclerosisBy Doug Ankerman

Wearing the sash as one newly diagnosed with multiple sclerosis is an overwhelming experience.

Mind spins. Heart races. Limbs tremble (that being the MS part).

Diagnosis may bring closure to some questions. But now new challenges arise. Continue reading

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What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting…

By Scott Cremeans

As a seventeen-year veteran MSer, I am sometimes asked to advise the newly diagnosed. Sometimes I am the one to welcome the recently initiated into the fraternity or sorority of MSers. Questions get posed to me all of the time typically asking the same queries in different forms. Is MS a death sentence?  No. You have MS, how do you look so good?  Oil of Olay. What now? Live your life.

Then one gentleman’s query put me in a quandary. Continue reading

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Accepting Your Diagnosis – Welcome the Beast?

By Lauren Kovacs

This is a process that is very different for everyone. It is not easy to face the monster. It is often a lonely quest. Questions, nervousness, unknowns, anger and shock tend to be its odor. Stinky.

My story is too long to write. You would get bored. It was so long ago and re-living it does not help me much. It changes and we change with it. Faith, for me, has been my only rock.

It started when I was 16 and involved nine months of Continue reading

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Spooky Oreo Dirt Cups

Halloween Dessert RecipeWhip up a batch of Spooky Oreo Dirt cups.  This Halloween dessert recipe makes a tasty chocolatey treat that the kids can even help you make! I love that it’s easy to swap out sugar-free pudding and light Cool Whip to reduce the calories too! Continue reading

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Medicare and ACA Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment for MedicareIt’s that time again! Open enrollment for Medicare and private insurance coverage is upon us. Below are some important health insurance details for these open enrollment periods.

Open Enrollment for Medicare and the Health Insurance Marketplace

  • Medicare open enrollment begins on October 15th and ends on December 7th.
  • Open enrollment for private insurance through the Affordable Care Act’s Health Insurance Marketplace begins November 1st and ends December 15th. If you do not enroll in a marketplace plan by December 15th, you cannot enroll in a plan for the rest of 2019 unless you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.
  • Coverage for both Medicare and the Health Insurance Marketplace plans begins on January 1, 2019.

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Repeatedly Accepting My Health Condition: It’s Not One and Done

By Stacie Prada

Living with multiple sclerosis, I find I repeatedly need to accept my diagnosis and reality. I have moments where I feel great and totally at ease with my health, life and possible future decline. Other times I have symptoms ramp up, and frustration and fear can leave me rattled.

I’ve been living with my diagnosis ten years, have likely had MS at least another 15, and Continue reading

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