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Friday, October 7, 2011

Learn about Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy (PML)




Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) is a disorder that harms the myelin that covers and protects nerves in the brain's white matter. Myelin is an insulating tissue layer that forms around nerves in the brain and spinal cord, as well as in other places. It is meant to enable fast, efficient impulse transmission along the nerve cells.
When myelin is damaged, nerve cells in the brain that lack this protection cannot transmit messages to nerves in the rest of the body. The damage can also cause the impulses to slow down, which can lead to diseases like PML and multiple sclerosis. PML is a life-threatening condition that is usually fatal.
PML is caused by the JC virus (JCV), named in 1971after a patient, John Cunningham, who had PML. The virus was isolated from John Cunningham's brain. JCV is very common, affecting 70 to 90 percent of humans, but is harmful only in cases of immunodeficiency, as in people with AIDS or whose immune systems have been compromised by certain conditions or by drugs such as Raptiva®, Tysabri® and Rituxan™.

Symptoms and Complications of PML

Patients with PML will usually experience the following symptoms:
  • Headaches
  • Clumsiness and loss of coordination
  • Aphasia (loss of language ability)
  • Memory loss
  • Problems with seeing
  • Progressive weakness of the arms and legs
Symptoms depend upon which area of the brain is affected. They progress over a period of days to weeks, and sometimes months, but eventually lead to death unless the immune system can be reconstituted.
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Disclaimer:  'MS Views and News' (MSVN), does not endorse any products or services found on this blog. It is up to you to seek advice from your healthcare provider. The intent of this blog is to provide information on various medical conditions, medications, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to keep you informed of current health-related issues. It is not intended to be complete or exhaustive, nor is it a substitute for the advice of your physician. Should you or your family members have any specific medical problem, seek medical care promptly.

Cleveland Clinic study discovers new targets for treating autoimmune diseases

Friday, October 7, 2011, Cleveland: Researchers have discovered a cellular pathway that promotes inflammation in diseases like asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, inflammatory bowel disease, and multiple sclerosis. Understanding the details of this pathway may provide opportunities for tailored treatments of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.


Read More

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On the 4th Wednesday of each month  
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"MS Views and News" is a 501©(3) Not-for-Profit organization as recognized by the Internal Revenue Service 
.. All contributions are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law 
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Disclaimer:  'MS Views and News' (MSVN), does not endorse any products or services found on this blog. It is up to you to seek advice from your healthcare provider. The intent of this blog is to provide information on various medical conditions, medications, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to keep you informed of current health-related issues. It is not intended to be complete or exhaustive, nor is it a substitute for the advice of your physician. Should you or your family members have any specific medical problem, seek medical care promptly.

With a Harmonica in-hand, patient lives with his MS to become philanthropist, music producer

Friday October 7, 2011
"You got to be beautiful inside," says Bellows Falls harmonica player Jimmy Gordon, "or it’s not going to come through in your music."
His voice is as light as dragonfly wings, soft as a poppy petal. Then he tells a joke.
"You know, harmonica is the only instrument that you play half the notes on an inhale." His smile gets wider, more impish. "So what’s the difference between a banjo and a harmonica?"
Jimmy straightens as if suddenly inflated by a passing breeze. His face can’t contain his smile much longer.
"With a harmonica, only half the notes suck!"
He throws back his head and cackles. The laugh comes from deep in his belly and twirls in his throat, bursting from him in sharp pops and glides.
"Oh, that one gets everybody," he says. His face settles into thoughtful rest. His voice slides soft again.
He can’t help it. When he talks, when he moves, Jimmy Gordon sings. ***
Jimmy started playing harmonica as a child growing up outside Washington, D.C. He picked up the guitar and other instruments along the way.
His mother, a guidance counselor in the D.C. public schools, was a music lover and piano player who regularly took the family to concerts.
"I remember going to see Airmen of Note, the Air Force jazz group," Jimmy says. "She took us to Sonny Terry, Charlie Byrd. And once, when I was about 12, she says, ‘I got tickets for you and your friend and his mother to go see this guitarist.’ I thought, Bohhhh-ring!"
He laughs again, then grows hushed, remembering the show. "So we get there, and first The Nighthawks opened, and then Roy Buchanan came out, the world’s best unknown guitarist. He started to play ‘Hey Joe’ and ‘Messiah Will Come Again,’ and we FREAKED."
Jimmy’s first big break came just three years later, when he was invited to play harmonica with Jerry Lee Lewis, who saw him play with the house band at The Stardust Inn in Waldorf, Md. A gig with Bonnie Raitt followed not long after.
Music was the only thing Jimmy wanted to do, so he dropped out of high school and played. He loved blues, roots and rock most of all. Eventually, he earned his GED and moved to Boston, where he attended Berklee College of Music and Emerson College, among other schools.
Young and talented and full of vinegar and dreams, Jimmy lived not too far from the edge.
One night, he played a show with Bonnie Raitt in Worcester.
"It was at this beautiful war memorial," he remembers. "When it was over, I had to walk home to Boston!" It’s about 50 miles from city to city.
"I had to stop in this police station in Natick and ask for directions. They said," Jimmy pitches his voice lower and stiffens his arms, "Go down this dark road -- and you better go soon!"
He cackles again. "Finally I get up on Route 128." If possible, his laughter gets louder. "Oh my god, that was a terrible night. The sun was up by the time I got home. No one ever knew that story."
Though he moved to the Brattleboro area in the early 1980s, Jimmy stayed in close contact with the national music scene. He played with NRBQ, Big Brother and the Holding Company, Jimmy Johnson, and many other bands of large and small renown. As part of a tour with the Grammy-winning songwriter J.J. Cale, who wrote the Eric Clapton hits "After Midnight" and "Cocaine," Jimmy even performed at Carnegie Hall.
At the same time he was earning his chops as a musician, Jimmy became a harmonica technician, inventing tunings, building and repairing instruments, and teaching.
All these strands came together in 1997. That year, Jimmy released a well-regarded album, "Come on Over," and found a mentor and friend in master technician Joe Filisko.
He also started feeling dizzy, seeing double, and losing his hearing in both ears.
"It took 12 years to get a diagnosis," he says. His puckishness crumples and hardens. "But those were the early symptoms of multiple sclerosis."
A hard decade followed. He lost his health. He lost a great deal of work. Uninsured, he had to use credit cards to pay for medical care. He had to apply for disability. He feels he lost his looks, moving, he says, "from what someone once called ‘hottie’ to definitely ‘nottie.’"
He did not, however, lose music.   -- Click here to continue reading this story




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On the 4th Wednesday of each month  
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Call-in to have (5) minutes of airtime.
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Disclaimer:  'MS Views and News' (MSVN), does not endorse any products or services found on this blog. It is up to you to seek advice from your healthcare provider. The intent of this blog is to provide information on various medical conditions, medications, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to keep you informed of current health-related issues. It is not intended to be complete or exhaustive, nor is it a substitute for the advice of your physician. Should you or your family members have any specific medical problem, seek medical care promptly.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Multiple sclerosis - Symptoms - Causes - Diagnosis - Treatment


Multiple sclerosis is a life-long debilitating auto -immune disease that affects the nerves . Treatment is aimed at controlling the symptoms.

Multiple Sclerosis or MS affects more than a million people worldwide. It frequently attacks young people usually in the age group of 20-40 years and is more common among females than males. 

MS is a crippling disease that starts in the prime of youth. It can cause financial, physical and emotional drain on the family of the patient for many years. It is not a killer disease and the patient has more or less a normal life span but gradually as the condition worsens, the patient is totally disabled and requires managed care. 

It was first described in 1835 by French neurologist Jean Charcot. In the initial years the disease has remissions and relapses and typically has a long drawn or chronic course with the person completely recovering from the early symptoms of multiple sclerosis. Relapses or recurrence of the symptoms can occur after initial recovery with each attack consisting of the earlier symptoms or new ones. The symptom pattern, course and severity of the disease vary from person to person.

It has an auto immune origin i.e. the body begins attacking its own nerve fibers, when the fibers become scarred, they give rise to the picture of ‘sclerosis’. 

The affected nerve fibers cannot convey signals to and from the brain resulting in loss of sensation, weakness, inability to walk, see or balance oneself, depending on the particular nerve affected by sclerosis.

The diagnosis is made with the help of a typical history, neurological examination and an MRI scan which will show the extent and area of sclerosis.

Treatment for multiple sclerosis consists of medicines to modify the course of the disease, drugs to relieve symptoms, and physical therapy to cope with disability caused by the disease. 



Article source: MEDINDIA




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Disclaimer:  'MS Views and News' (MSVN), does not endorse any products or services found on this blog. It is up to you to seek advice from your healthcare provider. The intent of this blog is to provide information on various medical conditions, medications, treatments, and procedures for your personal knowledge and to keep you informed of current health-related issues. It is not intended to be complete or exhaustive, nor is it a substitute for the advice of your physician. Should you or your family members have any specific medical problem, seek medical care promptly.