Ah, now onto one of my favorite topics, asinine medical research. A study out of the University Of Washington looked at the concern about falling among MS patients (click here). Shockingly, they found a majority of MS patients are concerned about falling, and even restrict their activities as a result of those concerns. HOLY CRAP! STOP THE PRESSES! You mean to say that patients suffering from a disease that weakens limbs, effects balance, and causes dizziness are worried about falling? Well, knock me over with a feather (and believe me, you could)! Researchers conducting such studies appear to be required by law to create acronyms, so this bunch of Einsteins refer to "concern about falling" as CAF. Their careful analysis of 575 patients found that 62% reported CAF, and that 67% restricted their activities as a result of CAF. I'm very curious about those 5% who don't report any CAF yet still restrict their activities. Are they psychic? Do they take their umbrellas with them on sunny days?
A further insight was that "While the researchers found that fall risk increased with declining mobility function, at a certain threshold, further declines in mobility function were associated with fewer falls, possibly because of reduced fall risk exposure." In other words, as a person's body becomes more screwed up due to MS, their risk of falling increases, until they become so freaking gimpy that their asses get stuck in wheelchairs, at which point their risk of falling decreases dramatically. WELL, HOWDY! Who would've ever thought that people sitting wheelchairs have less chance of falling than people who will very soon need to be in wheelchairs but are still gamely struggling to remain upright despite the increasing uselessness of their legs? Brilliant!
I want to conduct my own research study. I'd like to test the CAF of the researchers who did this study the moment before I drop bowling balls on their heads. And then let's see how their behavior is modified after they return from the emergency room. Jackasses.
Made me laugh out loud.
And further up, with the post about MS progression and fears, makes me worry like hell. For his sake and any of us.
There was a time not long ago when the worst I could imagine of MS was the wheelchair. It was eye-opening (and maybe eyes should stay closed, while they can) to learn how it keeps getting worse.