“Whenever one is exposed to environmental toxins there is a threat to health and quality of life”
-Richard P. Turco
“It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver”
The facts I have presented at length in this book, lead to several ideas on what causes MS, and as it remains to be considered multi-genetic, so I believe to be multi-factorial. In using the metaphor of an orchestra, there are many instruments- pH homeostasis, detriments of sulphur dioxide and carbonic acid yet investigated, and deprivations of UVB radiation- I imagine bring about the concert of MS. It appears that the body is a remarkable creation, as the condition of MS is a manner in which to survive through harsh adaptation. Is it truly rational to think that if acids and anthropogenic stress destroy plants, trees in the forest, marine life or edifices in Italy, that humans could totally escape without harm?
Robert A. Smith wrote some poignant thoughts in his book back in 1872…
“If the true explanation be found in the increased oxidizing effect of the air of towns, the carbonic acid will not be so hurtful in the air as the sulphuric, although the latter exists in such small quantities. Mineral acid fumes, I know by too much experience, are exceedingly irritating to the nervous system. At the same time I am not aware of any experiments with carbonic acid and the blood beginning with a natural, wholesome amount and rising up by .01 percent at a time. I tried only a few hastily, with minute amounts, but got no such results as by sulphurous acid”
“If then, the eye can see those changes in the blood, it is not to be wondered at that those minute potions amongst which chemical changes act should, by their accumulated agency, influence the whole phenomena of life”
“We live in air, and the air flows continually into our blood: no wonder, then that we are influenced by climate, which means the condition of the air”
“We are compelled daily to consider the relation of the size of our rooms to the number of those within them if we are to live in health; those who neglect this suffer”
If only Robert A. Smith had met Jean Martin Charcot in those halls of the Salpêtrière in Paris, perhaps the history of a disease called Multiple Sclerosis would have been very different.
"When I was diagnosed twenty years ago, exactly two decades ago, I had no idea what "you have MS" meant.....it was disconcerting to learn that I was going to have deficits in mental speed and working memory due to brain atrophy, along with deficits in verbal memory. I was basically at risk to lose my mind. I vowed to stay proactive before I was forced to take this all sitting down." (p.2)
"Being a lover of quotes, it served me to remember the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Shallow men believe in luck. Strong men believe in cause and effect". I was never one to think that developing MS was merely due to bad luck." (p.6)
"Dr. Poser had a hypothesis that it was the Vikings who distributed the genetic factor that brought upon MS (Poser 1994).....an "out of the box" theory, and to his credit, a breath of fresh air for me. The literature I had read in the three years since my diagnosis was quite redundant, and quickly became stale to my thinking." (p.25)
"When more is known of the cause and essential pathology of the disease in different cases, more rational methods may brighten the therapeutic prospects"
-Sir William Gowers (p.90)
"Are the powers to be really looking for a cure? For the most part, I do believe they are, and that said, I always understood that until the exact cause of Multiple Sclerosis was discovered, a cure would remain elusive" (p.91)
"People do not die from Multiple Sclerosis patients are told, as if it is some consolation prize, but what does this quote imply, by AJ Cummings describing his brother WNP Barbellion , "Never was a half-dead man more alive".....certainly MS will not kill you, but...
"The idea of Tony McMichael in his book, Human Frontiers, environments and disease....would be to take multiple sclerosis, for example, and ask "why does a population have an unusually high rate?" He states it would be more beneficial to not question individual biology, but human ecology, taking into account geography and environmental influences" (p. 95)
"Can the task of demanding change within the field of MS truly be any more daunting than the struggle to have any one in society accept us and our disease?"
"The premise on which most work on EAE has been based, mainly on understanding of EAE would lead simultaneously to an understanding of MS, has not been proved to date"
-Dr. Barry Arnason (p. 99)
"Sound societal judgments can be based only on a sound scientific information base. Failure to acquire the needed information will lead to needless discord and likely to one or more national economic or public health tragedies." (p. 100)
"Relationships in life are the most important part of living; we are social creatures...MS is no different...those with MS need significant others, and physically healthy people to win the struggles the disease presents. It is a difficult struggle to keep relationships strong and connected when the disease is robbing the abilities to perform and remain connected, because often there is mistaken labeling of "high maintenance" or the course of the disease has sadly brought that to a truism" (p. 103)
"And of course the topic of RELATIONSHIPS would not be complete without mentioning sex and intimacy.... (p. 104)
*There is a website SCORECARD which you can google and obtain environmental issues for any zip code. In performing an example of a statistics I gathered, the trigger/toxin in the air that I conclude is responsible for developing MS exists 10 times more in the section of Massachusetts I grew up in, than in a section of Florida I am writing this from, and exists 7 times more intensely in the Chicago area, than in Massachusetts-it does matter.