Getting started on MS research

You've got questions about MS, and you want answers. You're interested in doing your own research, but where do you start?

Asking a clear question

First, narrow down what you want to know. There may be a hundred questions going through your mind, but start with the thing that you want to know most. Try to think of it in terms of a question that you want answered. Make this question as clear and specific as possible (for example, if you're interested in learning about MS treatments, focus on the type of MS that you have).

Here are some examples of clear, specific questions:

  • What causes MS?
  • How are MS relapses treated?
  • Are there any new treatments for relapsing-remitting MS?

Knowing where to look

Once you've got a clear question in mind, you need to know where to look for information.

There are many information sources, including:

  • your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist
  • your local MS society
  • a library
  • the internet

Which source is best? That depends on your question and the way that you like to learn.

Your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist can help answer questions related to your care, and can also help direct you to other MS information sources.

Your local MS society can be a great starting point for information, as they will often have information prepared to answer some of the commonly asked questions about MS and MS research, and can direct you to other information sources. See for more information.

Your local library can also be a good place to start. The librarian can help you find information and teach you to do your own searches of resources available through the library, which may include books, newspapers, magazines, and scientific journals.

You can also search for information using the internet. This gives you access to a wide variety of information, including scientific journals, videos, articles, and online support groups. But to get the most out of the internet, you'll need to learn to search effectively and separate good information from bad (for tips, see "Being a savvy internet searcher").

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