What it’s about

Images of profound physical disability usually spring to mind when most people hear the words: multiple sclerosis. They immediately think of an illness that causes uncontrolled movements, obvious imbalance, progressive paralysis and slurred speech. But there’s a hidden aspect to this chronic disease that often goes unrecognized and is frequently misunderstood. These invisible symptoms include depression, anxiety, bladder dysfunction, cognitive impairment and fatigue – and while they’re often considered less significant (or benign), their impact is anything but mild. This book shines a light on that experience and expands the definition of what it means to have MS beyond obvious physical disability.

Faulty Wiring is the story of my journey with MS, but it’s so much more than a memoir. Along with sharing my story, my greatest fears and the lessons I have learned along the way, I’ve approached the topic as a journalist, incorporating factual information about MS into my personal narrative (e.g., What is MS? Who gets it? What are the possible causes? And how it is treated?). And the result is a rare blend of knowledge and experience that I believe provides a more balanced and intimate perspective on MS than other books written by subject matter “experts.”

How it can help

In addition to offering hope that it’s possible to live with this illness without significant physical disability, this book gives practical tips on how to communicate with your loved ones, share the news with your kids, manage cognitive impairment and fatigue, eat well and stay hydrated, exercise your mind and body, and secure the medical care and emotional support that you need. It also includes an extensive list of organizations providing resourcesan annotated bibliography of books on MS, and a collection of additional references available on the web and in the scientific literature.

Anyone with MS will find this book helpful – especially the newly diagnosed. But it will resonate the most with those who are experiencing the invisible symptoms of MS. I know what it feels like to live with these hidden disabilities and how distressing it can be to have your problems dismissed. If you are having similar issues, I think you’ll find comfort and validation in my story. And if you know someone who has MS – or you care for MS patients medically – you’ll be encouraged to look beyond their physical appearance in assessing the full impact of their disease.

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Faulty Wiring: Living with Invisible MS

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