Healthy Living

How and Why Does Multiple Sclerosis Appear Differently in African Americans?


Since, for such a long time, medical professionals thought that the African American community was all but immune to the disease, it may be somewhat surprising to read that the presence of multiple sclerosis in the African American community is equivalent to the Caucasian community, especially. These recent and startling findings have begun to raise questions, and they should.

Researchers and readers alike may be most curious as to why the prevalence of MS in the African American community has gone undetected for such a long time. This question is difficult to answer, and there are likely a whole host of factors that have contributed to the popularization of the myth that the disease doesn’t affect the African American community. For starters, there are certainly some systematic barriers regarding general health care and how African American and Caucasian communities receive treatment. While there may be quite a few economic and social factors that have contributed to the popularization of this myth, researchers are beginning to speculate that there may be some differences with regard to how the disease presents in these communities that have also contributed to the myth.