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Twice as Many

By The National MS Society
March 13, 2019

As an invisible illness, it’s often difficult to know if someone lives with MS. So, it comes as no surprise that many of us have a connection to MS we may be unaware of.

And the odds of our connection have just increased.

Previous studies on the prevalence of people living with MS in the United States put the figure at 400,000.

But a new study has confirmed that nearly 1 million people live with MS in this country—that’s more than twice the original number.

This news is a pivotal moment in the MS movement and brings a sense of urgency. As we continue to fuel research to better understand this disease, it raises the stakes to end MS—twice as many people now need a cure.

We asked a few people affected by this disease how they feel about this groundbreaking study. Here’s what they have to say:

Rita Joubran
Houston, TX, diagnosed 2009

“This will hopefully add to the sense of urgency to help find that cure. I believe that we are stronger in numbers—the more sisters and brothers that I have fighting with me, the better my chances of winning!”

Bob Vincent
Sammamish, WA, diagnosed 1994

“More awareness equals more attention and effort to find and implement a real cure for those living with MS, those susceptible to it here in the Northwest and elsewhere in the world.”

Dawnia Baynes
Compton, CA, diagnosed 2006

“I am glad to know that MS is a focus and that there is a push to get accurate numbers. The larger the number of people to study, the better we can figure out this disease and beat it.”

Nicole Ramirez-Hermann
Sugar Land, TX, diagnosed 2011

“Maybe if people understand that there are more of us with MS out there in this big old world then maybe there will be more understanding that not all of us sit in wheelchairs or walk funny, yet we still have this disease and live with it day in and day out and try to function at a normal person’s pace.”

Ann Marie Johnson
Brooklyn, NY, diagnosed 2002

“This news definitely makes me hopeful that as more connections are made, there will be more services, funding and understanding from the community for people living with MS.”

The National MS Society

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