Multiple sclerosis or MS is an inflammatory disease that damages the nerve cells located in the brain and spinal cord. MS causes a variety of physical and mental impairments that can flare up. The cause of MS is unknown and there is no known cure for the disease.
Who are some of the most famous people with MS? Comedian Richard Pryor was diagnosed with MS in 1986 and the condition led him to use a motorized scooter. Pryor can be seen using this vehicle in the David Lynch film Lost Highway, which would be Pryor's last film appearance. Pryor also suffered from heart disease and perished from a heart attack in 2005. Other film stars who suffer from MS include Christina Applegate, Teri Garr, Annette Funicello, and David Lander.
Talk show host Montel Williams has been an outspoken advocate for MS since he was diagnosed in 1999. Williams founded the nonprofit MS Foundation and advocates for the use of medical marijuana to treat MS. Williams has stated that snowboarding has been the best therapy to treat his disease.
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Christina Applegate announced on Twitter in August 2021 that she was diagnosed with MS:
Hi friends. A few months ago I was diagnosed with MS. It’s been a strange journey. But I have been so supported by people that I know who also have this condition. It’s been a tough road. But as we all know, the road keeps going. Unless some [jerk] blocks it.
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Selma Blair was diagnosed with MS in August 2018, though she experienced the symptoms long before her diagnosis. In fact, Blair believes she'd been suffering from MS for 15 years, noting she may have simply ignored minor problems.
In the 1990s, comedian Richard Pryor used a scooter to get around because MS made it difficult for him to walk. He can be seen on his scooter in David Lynch's Lost Highway, Pryor's last film.
- In 2016, actress Jamie Lynn Sigler revealed that she had been battling MS for 15 years. Sigler was diagnosed just before the fourth season of The Sopranos, when she was 19 years old.
- Talk show host Montel Williams was diagnosed with MS in 1999. He now runs the MS Foundation, a non-profit organization that focuses on research and education.
- Photo: flickr / CC0Mitt Romney's wife Ann suffers MS and is a board member of the New England chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.