Live music and displays of artwork by people with multiple sclerosis (MS) highlighted the importance of upper limb function at the #ThinkHand awareness event on 22 February.
Over 100 people, including representatives from advocacy groups, industry and MS clinics, joined together in the Bankside Gallery in London to celebrate hand and upper limb function in people with MS.
The guest of honour, Michelle Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer of MS Society UK, emphasized the value of hand and upper limb function in maintaining independence – a top priority for people with MS.
Professor Gavin Giovannoni and Dr Klaus Schmierer, from Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, highlighted that people with advanced MS who have lost the ability to walk but retain their upper limb function are currently overlooked when it comes to treatment.
The #ThinkHand campaign objectives include:
- challenge the NHS England guidelines for stopping DMTs when people with MS develop secondary progressive MS and/or start using a wheelchair
- get the pharmaceutical industry to do trials in more advanced MS focusing on hand and arm function as the primary outcome
Ultimately, this could lead to more treatment options for people with advanced MS.
You can find out more about the #ThinkHand campaign on the Barts MS Research Blog and on Twitter at #ThinkHand.