Houdini wrote:Read this article and it made me wonder. . .
Yes, it makes me wonder as well. I spent ten years in the automotive repair industry. For the first two of those years I worked cleaning engine and transmission parts and had my ungloved hands in solvent (including carburetor and brake cleaner) nearly every day. I eventually started wearing gloves due to slow healing sores that would develop on my hands. These never reoccurred afterwards.
I also wonder about other events that may have increased my risk factor for MS. For example, I once hit the side of my wrist with a hatchet while chopping firewood. While getting stitches, the doctor noted that I had sliced clean through one of the large nerves in that area. As a result I experienced neuropathy in my hand for many months afterwards. More relevant though is that I think this may have been a negative exposure of myelin to my immune system, i.e., the introduction of bacteria from the hatchet blade combined with the myelin may have triggered the production of some auto-reactive T cells. It's just something I wonder about.
Another thing I wonder about is garlic and its potential to be an increased risk factor for MS. For many years I ate quite a bit of garlic. When I was diagnosed, my doctor asked if I was taking anything to boost my immune system and I mentioned that I ate a lot of garlic. However, he didn't think that this was relevant. I've since greatly reduced my intake of garlic due to reports on PubMed that suggest that it can enhance cellular based immunity. What's interesting though is that some papers indicate that garlic promotes a Th1 response while others indicate that it promotes a Th2 response. It could be that the response is dependent on the specific system or that the jury is still out on garlic.
Any thoughts on these or other potential risk factors are welcomed.