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MS in the Black Community

New research shows that more Black people are diagnosed with MS than previously thought and that they may have different symptoms.

ANQUNETTE
DIAGNOSED IN 2013

Historically, MS was believed to primarily affect white people, particularly those of European descent. Recent research, however, indicates a higher incidence (the number of people newly diagnosed with MS within a given period of time) of MS in Black people than previously thought — consistent with the rate of MS in white people.

Black people with MS might also have more aggressive disease progression, greater disability and different symptoms, including more walking, balance, and coordination problems, more cognitive and visual symptoms, more frequent relapses with poorer recovery, and earlier disability onset.

Scientists don’t yet know exactly why these differences exist. Clinical trials are looking into answers now.

 

Documentary Explores How Black Americans Can Live Well With MS

Poet Azure Antoinette and others discuss living with MS in a new documentary.

Watch the Video

Living Well With MS: A Guide For Black Americans

Living Well With MS: A Guide For Black Americans

Tips and information about how to live well with MS.


Download the Guidebook


Black MS Experience Summit

Black MS Experience Summit

Connect with others who understand the distinct experience of life with MS as a Black person and leading MS experts who offer support, guidance and updates on research.

Get Connected

Race and MS: Confronting Inequities

Race and MS: Confronting Inequities

Uncovering the gaps in MS research, diagnosis and treatment.

 

Get Up to Speed

Black Girl Magic

Black Girl Magic

"I started We Are ILL as an awareness campaign on social media and an online support group. Now Black women can search for us and think, 'I see myself.'"


Read Victoria’s Story

Obstacles to Access

Obstacles to Access

Black people with MS are advocating for increased access to healthcare and participation in research projects.


Read the Article

Make a Difference Through Research

Make a Difference Through Research

Black people are underrepresented in research studies, making it difficult to tell which treatments are best or how to reduce the risk of MS.

Watch the Video

Black Women with MS Speak Up

Black Women With MS Speak Up

Three women share their experiences of getting diagnosed with MS.


Read the Article


Advance research

It is important that Black people with MS participate in research studies so that scientists can understand why the disease affects them differently and ensure that healthcare professionals deliver the best possible care. Check out five initiatives currently underway and seeking volunteers:

Learn more about how you could be Making a Difference in MS Through Research from the MS Minority Research Engagement Partnership Network, and talk to your health care provider about participating in a clinical trial or other type of research.

 

The National MS Society is Here to Help

Newly Diagnosed
If you or somone close to you has recently been diagnosed, access our MS information and resources.

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