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October-November 2006

Volume 24, Issue 5



Facing the Cognitive Challenges of Multiple Sclerosis

by Jeffrey N. Gingold


In Facing the Cognitive Challenges, Jeffrey Gingold—attorney, father, speed skater, and person with MS—tells his own story of dealing with that havoc. Powerful and revealing, his is a story of denial and then acceptance, but with no hint of surrender.

Faced with repeated lapses in his ability to form a coherent sentence or thought, to remember the route for his drive home, or even to recognize his wife's face, Gingold faced the fact that his neurologist was not addressing nor even acknowledging these problems. He sought a better team: a neuropsychologist, a neurologist who "got it," and other providers including physical and occupational therapists.


With testing, counseling, and attentive medical treatments, Gingold retired at the ripe old age of 41 and figured out how to live a life of purpose—for his community and his family. No longer the workaholic litigator, he has, with his team, developed a set of strategies that works for him. And by sharing his journey and the perspective he gained along the way, he tells an empowering story.

It is not a road map for every person who experiences cognitive changes. He understands that each person with MS is unique and lays out a series of steps that allows people to find an individual path. He challenges us to have four goals: get educated about the cognitive changes in MS; take action to make the necessary adjustments in our lives; reach out for available answers; and leave room for "slow hugs."

Published by Demos Medical Publishing, 2006, $19.95 each. 386 Park Avenue South , New York , NY 10016 . Web site: www.demosmedpub.com.



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Reviewed by Bernice Schacter, PhD, a biomedical consultant and author of The New Medicines: How Drugs Are Created, Approved, Marketed, and Sold (Praeger, 2006). She has been living with MS since 1991.

Copyright © National Multiple Sclerosis Society, 2006