People with MS, just like people everywhere, aim to age well; maintaining physical and mental health for as long as possible. We undertook this survey in order to learn as much as we can from older people with MS. They are the people who know about aging with MS from first-hand knowledge and rarely have they been asked their opinions.
To hear from this group, we surveyed older Canadians who were over 55 years of age with MS for 20 or more years. One person told me she was an ‘MS veteran’. We heard from 743 people. (Thank you to you all for contributing to research to help others with MS!).
We have just published the preliminary findings in BMJ Open. The link to the full article is below. We have more papers to follow so I will update as they become available.
Even though about half of the respondents had major walking problems, they reported that they drank less alcohol, exercised more and smoked less than other Canadians their age. In general, they were more attentive to their health.
Our future papers will provide more information on the effects of other health conditions (like arthritis, heart disease and cancer), differences in aging between men and women, and predictors of exercise.