Tomblin proclaims MS Awareness Week in W.Va.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin proclaimed the week of March 3, 2014, Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Week in the Mountain State. Tomblin presented an official proclamation to West Virginia University Multiple Sclerosis Center administrator Julie Peasak on Thursday, March 6, encouraging all West Virginians to join him in the observance.
Usually striking young adults unexpectedly, multiple sclerosis (MS) is an often debilitating disease that affects the central nervous system. Symptoms are unpredictable, ranging from numbness in the extremities to loss of vision and paralysis. The disease is estimated to affect about 2.3 million people worldwide.

“Multiple sclerosis primarily affects young people who are just beginning their careers. It is the most common progressive disease of the central nervous system in this age group,” explained John Brick, M.D., professor and chair of the WVU Department of Neurology.  

“Importantly, the diagnosis is much easier to make now than 35 years ago, when I started as a neurologist. We have therapies that clearly improve patient outcomes that are a direct result of research efforts occurring all over the world, including WVU.”  

Women are significantly more likely to be diagnosed with MS than men, usually between the ages of 20 and 50, though children and the elderly sometimes develop the disease.

Established six years ago, the Multiple Sclerosis Center at WVU was the first comprehensive center in the state to treat patients with MS and to assist patients’ families in dealing with the illness.

As patients with multiple sclerosis require specialized care from a range of experts, WVU’s Multiple Sclerosis Center offers patients coordinated care and appointments, helping families concentrate on their health while preventing repeated trips to Morgantown for treatments.

The proclamation not only recognizes the exceptional research and clinical work of the WVU center but also promotes public awareness of the disease and ongoing educational efforts.

To learn more about neuromuscular disease treatment at WVU Healthcare, visit http://wvuhealthcare.com/wvuh/Healthcare-Services/Neurology/Neuromuscular-Diseases.

For more information about the WVU School of Medicine Department of Neurology, visit http://medicine.hsc.wvu.edu/neurology.

Photo: MS Center administrator Julie Peasak accepted Gov. Tomblin’s proclamation on behalf of WVU. (Photo courtesy of the Governor’s Office.)


For more information:
Leigh Limerick, Communications Specialist, 304-293-7087
lal: 03-07-14

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