All the money raised by JAYs goes to helping people who suffer with M.S.

Half we give to research and the rest towards helping local people with M.S.


Raising funds for multiple Sclerosis 

supported by

Registered Charity 1139257/SC041990

What is Multiple Sclerosis?

Hopefully this page will explain what Multiple Sclerosis is and what affects it will have.

It is not usual to feel devastated when first diagnosed with MS but with this page we will try to explain what is happening and hopefully allay any fears you may have.

Lets start at the beginning with what is MS and the causes and how it may affect you.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common disabling neurological condition affecting young adults. Around 100,000 people in the UK have MS.

MS is the result of damage to mylin - a protective sheath surrounding nerve fibres of the central nervous system.

When myelin is damaged, this interferes with messages between the brain and other parts of the body.

For some people, MS is characterised by periods of relapse and remission while for others it has a progressive pattern. For everyone, it makes life unpredictable.


There are four types of M.S

Relapsing-remitting form of MS

Nearly 9 in 10 people with MS have the common relapsing-remitting form of the disease. A relapse is when an episode (attack) of symptoms occurs. During a relapse, symptoms develop (described below) and may last for days, but usually last for 2-6 weeks. They sometimes last for several months. Symptoms then ease or go away (remit). You are said to be in remission when symptoms have eased or gone away. Further relapses then occur from time to time.

The type and number of symptoms that occur during a relapse vary from person to person, depending on where myelin damage occurs. The frequency of relapses also varies. One or two relapses every two years is fairly typical. However, relapses can occur more or less often than this. When a relapse occurs, previous symptoms may return, or new ones may appear.

This relapsing-remitting pattern tends to last for several years. At first, full recovery from symptoms, or nearly full recovery, is typical following each relapse. In time, in addition to myelin damage, there may also be damage to the nerve fibres themselves.

Eventually, often after 5-15 years, some symptoms usually become permanent. The permanent symptoms are due to accumulation of scar tissue in the brain and to the gradual nerve damage that occurs. The condition typically then slowly becomes worse over time. This is called secondary progressive MS. Typically, about two thirds of people with relapsing-remitting MS will have developed secondary progressive MS after 15 years.

Secondary progressive form of MS

There is a steady worsening of your symptoms (with or without relapses) in this form of MS. Many people with relapsing-remitting MS later develop this type of MS.

Primary progressive form of MS

In about 1 in 10 people with MS, there is no initial relapsing-remitting course. The symptoms become gradually worse from the outset, and do not recover. This is called primary progressive MS.

Benign MS

In less than 1 in 10 people with MS, there are only a few relapses in a lifetime, and no symptoms remain permanent. This is the least serious form of the disease and is called benign MS.



The MS Society has a range of topics dealing with MS to download for free.

Also, both the Society and the Trust publish their own magazines with stories, information and help. The Society charge a small fee for thier monthly MS Matters and the Trusts Open Door, is quarterly but free.

For more information on a whole range of issues dealing with MS, or if you need to talk to someone about MS, there is a free helpline, 24 hours a day at the M.S Society.


More MS web-sites and peoples own web-site on our links page.



· An estimated 2,500,000 people in the world have multiple sclerosis - including 100,000 in the UK - it is more common in countries further away from the equator

· MS is the most common potentially disabling disease of the central nervous system affecting young adults in the Western world

· Every week around 50 people in the UK are diagnosed with MS

· Diagnosis is usually between 20 and 40 years of age - rarely under 12 or over 55

· Three women have MS for every man

· Prognosis is uncertain - ranging from benign through 'coming and going' to severely disabling

· Common symptoms include pain, deadening fatigue, problems with sight, mobility and co-ordination

· MS is not hereditary - but there is a slightly higher chance of getting it if a relative has it - and it is not contagious

· There is no cure for MS but there are now drugs which can modify its course for some people and many symptoms can be successfully treated or managed

· MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) is giving neurologists better understanding of MS, helping diagnosis and research into treatments

. 50 people a week are diagnosed with M.S

. People with M.S are often diagnosed in their 20`s and 30`s

. M.S is the most common cause of disability in young adults

. Only 1 in 4 people with M.S regulary use a wheelchair


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