United Spinal Association is pleased to announce our participation in the second annual Progressive MS Day, being observed on March 28, 2019. In partnership with the multiple sclerosis (MS) community and governments across the country, Progressive MS Day shows support, offers education, and calls for more research to advance care and reduce disability for those living with the most debilitating forms of the disease.

Progressive MS Day 2019 will focus on the theme of “Embrace Your Community,” encouraging anyone affected by Progressive MS to come together with loved ones, patient advocacy groups, healthcare providers and the MS community to share their experiences and how they are taking an active role in managing the disease.

We are asking everyone to participate by sharing their own experiences and showing their support online. People living with a progressive form of MS, their loved ones, healthcare providers and supporters are encouraged to join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn using the official hashtag, #ProgressiveMSDay.

People can share stories of challenges, perseverance and hope by uploading photos, videos, written posts, artwork and more on social media using #ProgressiveMSDay. Additionally, they can link to helpful resources and services for those living with a progressive form of MS online and update their Facebook profile image with a Progressive MS Day Facebook frame, available at https://bit.ly/2ttqNtN.

Visit United Spinal’s Resource Center to learn about valuable resources and information on living with MS or contact our online help desk and one of our knowledgeable staff will provide you with answers.

Progressive forms of MS are characterized by a sustained build-up of symptoms with an insidious increase in disability.  With Primary Progressive MS (PPMS) in particular, disability accumulates twice as fast as in those with relapsing forms of MS. This means that people with PPMS experience more problems with walking, more difficulty remaining in the workforce, and require more assistance with everyday activities.

Recent research has shown that more than twice as many people – nearly 1 million – may be living with MS in the United States. Up to 15 percent are first diagnosed with a progressive form of the disease (Primary Progressive MS / PPMS). Additionally, the majority of those diagnosed with Relapsing Remitting MS (RRMS) will transition to a progressive form – known as Secondary Progressive MS (SPMS) – later in life. Progressive forms of MS remain frustratingly difficult to treat, due to a history of unsuccessful clinical trials and limited understanding of why progression occurs. More research and a deeper understanding of how to address the progressive elements of MS is needed to stop the disease.

Groups participating in Progressive MS Day include several national MS advocacy organizations, professional organizations, MS centers and healthcare providers, and Genentech. Governments around the country will also join together to formerly recognize March 28 as Progressive MS Day; these states include California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia and New Jersey.