So, yesterday, I talked about Joseph (Roman Reigns) Anoaʻi giving up his wresting career to fight his returning leukemia. A couple days prior to that, I read an article about actress Selma Blair coming that she has MS (Multiple Sclerosis).
This what she had to say from her Instagram: “I am in an exacerbation. By the grace of the lord, and will power and the understanding producers at Netflix, I have a job. A wonderful job. I am disabled. I fall sometimes. I drop things. My memory is foggy. And my left side is asking for directions from a broken gps. But we are doing it. And I laugh and I don’t know exactly what I will do precisely but I will do my best.”
She’s not the first celeb I’ve heard that has or had the disease. Jack Osbourne and Montel Williams has it. Richard Pryor had it.
Unlike MD (Muscular Dystrophy), which can start showing symptoms in young kids and a few of my friends’ve died from, MS shows up in young adults and older.
Because I’ve personally known more people with MD, I had to research MS. This is what I found on Healthline for the causes:
Cause 1: Immune system
MS is considered an immune-mediated disease: the immune system malfunctions and attacks the CNS. Researchers know that the myelin sheath is directly affected, but they don’t know what triggers the immune system to attack the myelin.
Research about which immune cells are responsible for the attack is ongoing. Scientists are seeking to uncover what causes these cells to attack. They’re also searching for methods to control or stop the progression of the disease.
Cause 2: Genetics
Several genes are believed to play a role in MS. Your chance of developing MS is slightly higher if a close relative, such as a parent or sibling, has the disease.
According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, if one parent or sibling has MS, the chances of getting the disease are estimated to be approximately 2.5 to 5 percent in the United States; the chances for an average person are approximately 0.1 percent.
Scientists believe that people with MS are born with a genetic susceptibility to react to certain (unknown) environmental agents. An autoimmune response is triggered when they encounter these agents.
Cause 3: Environment
Epidemiologists have seen an increased pattern of MS cases in countries located farthest from the equator. This correlation causes some to believe that vitamin D may play a role.
Vitamin D benefits the function of the immune system. People who live near the equator are exposed to more sunlight. As a result, their bodies produce more vitamin D.
The longer your skin is exposed to sunlight, the more your body naturally produces the vitamin. Since MS is considered an immune-mediated disease, vitamin D and sunlight exposure may be linked to it.
Cause 4: Infection
Researchers are considering the possibility that viruses and bacteria may cause MS. Viruses are known to cause inflammation and a breakdown of myelin (called demyelination). Therefore, it’s possible that a virus could trigger MS.
Several viruses and bacteria are being investigated to determine if they’re involved in the development of MS. These include:
human herpes virus-6 (HHV-6)
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)
Kudos to Ms. Blair for her openness about her disease and not stopping what she loves to do because of it.
Be good to each other.