The MS Wire - A Column by Ed Tobias

Florida, MS biomarker, Lemtrada, nasal spray

Diagnosed with MS at age 32 in 1980, Ed has written the “MS Wire” column for Multiple Sclerosis News Today since August 2016. He presents timely information on MS, blended with personal experiences. Before retiring from full-time work in 2012, Tobias spent more than four decades in broadcast and on-line newsrooms as a manager, reporter, and radio news anchor. He’s won several national broadcast awards. As an MS patient communicator, Ed consults with healthcare and social media companies. He’s the author of “We’re Not Drunk, We Have MS: A tool kit for people living with multiple sclerosis.” Ed and his wife split time between the Washington, D.C. suburbs and Florida’s Gulf Coast.

What Is Trigeminal Neuralgia in MS All About, Anyway?

My immediate thought after reading a recent MS News Today headline stating that trigeminal neuralgia (TN) affects more than 3% of MS patients was, “Really, only 3%?” The reason is I’ve seen several complaints about the condition, which causes excruciating pain in the face. As the story noted, TN…

MS Hiker Laces Up Her Boots for Appalachian Trail

Reservations at a base lodge have been made, and a starting date is circled on her calendar. MS hiker April Hester is ready to start up the Appalachian Trail in the eastern U.S. It’s always an uphill hike for April, even when the trail is flat. She was diagnosed with…

An Epstein-Barr Virus Primer for MS Patients

You may have heard about the research that’s just been published about the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and multiple sclerosis (MS). The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health study reports that being infected by EBV raises the risk of developing MS by 32 times. This isn’t a small or…

Aquatic Therapy for Chronic Back Pain

Multiple sclerosis (MS) has gotten to be a real pain in the back. In the past couple years, I’ve developed pain in a few areas of my body, especially my butt and back. Last winter, I tried physical therapy, but relief lasted only a short while. So, I think I’ll…

More Answers About COVID-19 Vaccines and MS

A little over a year ago, I wrote about whether people with multiple sclerosis (MS) should get a COVID-19 vaccine. I was anxious to be vaccinated as soon as I could, but I was also concerned about how the vaccines would affect someone with MS. Would the side effects…

Sun-seeking Finds Support in New Study

I’m back in Florida for the next several months, having left cloudy, windy, chilly Maryland for the Gulf Coast. It’s been sunny and in the low 80s for the past few days, and my multiple sclerosis (MS) is feeling just fine. A lot of people with MS avoid the heat,…

I’m Back on the MS ‘Bladder Coaster’

I thought I finally had this bladder thing licked. After years of urinary urgency and frequency, I’d been doing much better. I was sleeping at least seven hours a night without having to go to the bathroom, and bathroom trips were less frequent in the daytime, too. When traveling…

My Lemtrada Treatment, 5 Years Later

It was five years ago, Dec. 5, 2016, that I scootered into the office of Dr. Heidi Crayton, my neurologist, and plopped into a soft, brown leather recliner. Day 1 of Round 1 of my Lemtrada (alemtuzumab) infusions was about to begin. I’d prepped for this day: two days…

Can Focusing on the Epstein-Barr Virus Help Researchers Fight MS?

There are continuing signals that the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a fuel that can spark a multiple sclerosis (MS) fire. EBV is a herpes virus that causes infectious mononucleosis, more commonly known as mono. Sometimes called the “kissing disease” because the virus that causes it is easily spread through saliva,…

I’m Sleeping Better These Days, but Why?

I had a great night’s sleep the other night. I fell asleep quickly and slept straight through the night for nearly seven hours. When I got up in the morning, I felt refreshed, which is exceedingly rare these days. Plus, it even happened a few more times in the past…

I’m Grateful for My COVID-19 Booster Shot

I’m hurtin’ a little today. I have mild muscle aches, a bit more fatigue than usual, and dragging legs. It could just be a bad MS day, or it could be the result of my COVID-19 booster shot a couple days ago.  I received a third shot of the Moderna…