Last reply 3 days ago
Where You Live

Do you think that your environment impacted you getting MS? I live in the US and have been in the same area for my entire life. I’ve heard many times that, the farther you are from the equator, the higher your chances of getting MS. Do you live far from the equator? Do you think that a lack of Vitamin D caused or pushed your body to react the way it did?

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itsmewithms
1 week ago

I posted a link to this a few weeks ago when I saw it as I expected the incidence to be clearly higher the further north and lower to the south…yet Florida has 4x more then Minnesota and Wisconsin isn’t far behind and that is where I have always lived. The worst states in in the NE (Michigan all the way up through New Hampshire) as well as Alabama (lots of sun!) and Wyoming. Why does this map look way more like a water quality or watershed type of map?
https://www.bcbs.com/the-health-of-america/reports/the-health-impact-of-multiple-sclerosis


adrianna_k
1 week ago

@itsmewithms Oh wow, that’s odd! I’m part of the lucky MI group, I guess. Meh…hopefully more research will have more convincing reasons why people get MS. In the meanwhile, don’t drink the water…?! Lol


nutshell88
1 week ago

Im Saudi Arabian but I have a very white skin.
im heat intolerant. was diagnosed age 17. 2004. I feel its genetic and also war pollution .
my aunt – father side – was diagnosed same year but her age was age 45. shes white too i know skin color is not a factor just saying.


john_barry
1 week ago

Soon after my Dx I saw a distribution map of ms and found I was living in a high ms area (the north western Canadian prairies), so I moved several times to find a place where the ms progressed as slowly as possible. I feel best when living close to sea level. I found Vancouver and Tokyo about equal in terms of ms progression and actually got a little stronger in Victoria in the 90’s – perhaps a combination of air quality and elevation. Avoiding temperature extremes also seems important.


watsoncraig
1 week ago

Live in Scotland with PPMS and from the street I grew up in there is another 2 folk with MS, both within 2 years of me and we all ran about together as kids

@watsoncraig wow that’s interesting (not sure if interesting is the appropriate word but you know what I mean). Surely that is statistically significant?


itsmewithms
1 week ago

There is a group trying to gather detailed information about people with MS (and I assume people without) to try to find the common theme. I posted the link in a week or so ago, probably under a tag of “genetics” or “cause”. I signed off for them to have all information from my Drs but don’t think the answer is just there. In addition they are only collecting from 5000 people and just in the US.

I worked in Accounting in ERP systems and accustomed to “big data”. In this day of computer capability I don’t understand why they aren’t working with at least a hundred thousand people from around the world and pulling a lot more than just medical information and images. They should be pulling genetic info (I am in 23 and me), dietary info, physical info, etc. They need to get a little more serious about this before I believe “they are doing all they can” as in this age they can do more. I came from corporate America and know they do a lot more to make a profit…more could be done to find cures. Just my bully Monday morning warrior attitude ;-0


elsa75
1 week ago

I was born in South Africa (plenty of sunshine) and moved to Portugal at 12. My sister was 15 when we moved. I was diagnosed in 2007 with RR. My sister does not have MS. One of my first neurologists said that I probably would not have MS if I’d stayed in SA longer. I think location is a factor but there are other considerations. 🙂

@itsmewithms I totally agree and it’s something that has always amazed me. I’ve been diagnosed nearly 20 years now. So I have heard a LOT of theories about what may potentially cause MS. Some of them seem interesting / possible / likely, but no-one has ever asked me? Anybody diagnosed with MS should be asked if they want to fill in a tick list of questions. Have you had a Hep B vaccine? Do you have amalgam fillings? Did you have Epstein Barr virus (Glandular fever) as a child? Where were you born. Just ANYTHING that may be linked. It’s so easy to compile and work with big data these days. Researchers should go right back to basics to look for causes. Prevention is better than cure!


silvana_hansen
1 week ago

I was brought up in cooler countries but my cousin who also has MS, was brought up in hot countries. Our mothers were sisters so is there some sort of genetic link? I wonder about that. I also know siblings that have MS.


itsmewithms
1 week ago

@silvana_hansen the incidences raised on this forum of family members that also have MS are too often to be coincidence. I know of no other MS in my family that had been diagnosed but have to keep in mind that accurate diagnosis likely just started 25 years ago or so.

If you put cause in the the magnifying glass in the upper left there will be many hits. I posted a link to an article that shows they are starting to work on this. In the “picnic health” effort in the US they are trying to gather information on 5000 people diagnosed with MS by asking for our medical records. Hopefully they pick up steam and we are contacted again as I would recommend that they also collect our DNA information, etc. My family has an unusually high incidence of breast cancer and somehow I feel better knowing that I don’t carry the BRCA mutation but then neither did my sister that cancer took from us when she was in her mid 50’s so I don’t think that is the full story but it is useful information for me and my medical team. I think the genetic link to MS will be identified if they look the right direction.

https://www.healthline.com/health-news/new-research-indicates-ms-may-be-genetic-in-some-families?slot_pos=article_2&utm_source=Sailthru%20Email&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=multiplesclerosis&utm_content=2019-10-03&apid=29101565


wheelrunconflux
3 days ago

I’m in Scotland, and I have MS – its apparently pretty common up here. However, the vitamin D thing … it seems to be linked, but whether or not its strictly causal feels questionable. The majority of people in Scotland (and other countries of similar position) will probably be deficient in vitamin D – but, the majority of people don’t have MS.

That isn’t like, academic research, but it seems notable to me at least- if vitamin D is implicated, it isn’t the only causal agent. It feels to me like the vitamin D hypothesis exists in part ot explain the disparity between north and south in terms of diagnositics, but the existence of diagnosis in the south and people without vit D deficiency who have MS makes this kind of questionable as a singular cause at least.


potter
3 days ago

I am sure my MS is genetic my mom’s family all died of MS or ALS, I lost my sister and couple of cousins to ALS in the last few years. I have lived in Kansas my whole life, we have very hot summers and lots of sunshine. Winter doesn’t really show up until January and it is spring again by the end of March. My Vit D level was also very low when I was diagnosed. Hopefully the researchers are getting closer to figuring this out. Potter

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