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ActiveVoices™ Participation Agreement

By clicking on this box, you should acknowledge and agree that your participation in the ActiveVoices program is completely voluntary. You understand that the role of your Mentor is to provide you with information about his or her own personal experiences living with MS and MS therapies. Your Mentor is an MS patient—not a physician or nurse with medical expertise. Therefore, your Mentor is trained not to provide you with, and you should not rely upon your Mentor for, medical treatment advice. You should understand that your MS and treatment experiences may differ from your Mentor's experiences and that any questions you have about possible side effects, risks or potential benefits of treatment, adverse events, or your MS disease course should be directed to your own health care provider. You also understand that your Mentor is a volunteer and Biogen Idec does not compensate your Mentor for providing you with the mentoring services. Your Mentor does not speak on behalf of or represent Biogen Idec. Your mentor is limited in what he or she can say about Biogen Idec's products by rules from the Food and Drug Administration to information that is consistent with the applicable product's approved label. You may stop participating in the ActiveVoices Mentor program at any time. If you have any concerns or questions about what your Mentor says to you, your relationship with your Mentor, or the ActiveVoices program in general, please feel free to contact MS ActiveSource at 1-800-456-2255.

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Peer Mentor Profile

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Debra R., Diagnosed with MS in 1998, Female, 45-54, Married

How did you first find out about your relapsing MS?

I woke up one Tuesday morning with numbness on the top part of my forearm and the top of my thigh on the right side. As the week progressed the numbness began to travel up my arm and down my leg, by weeks end burning had set in my joints. When I visited a doctor of osteopathic medicine he said there was no medical reason for my symptoms. On Saturday I could no longer take the pain and visited a local emergency room. After being examined I was told nothing but to visit a neuro on Monday.

What emotions did you experience when first diagnosed with relapsing MS?

I cried and cried cuz I didnt know much about MS, as soon as I got home I called my mom. She then informed me that my great aunt had MS, as well as my great uncles daughter. (all from the same Denny family) Thats when fear set in because my great aunt had died very young and my distant cousin had walking problems. Then I was angry, why me? What did I do to deserve this?

How has your outlook changed today regarding your relapsing MS?

My outlook changed after I met a doctor that really turned my life around. He understood because he had a brother with MS. He found me a neurologist with MS experience and then got me on medication to reduce the relapses I was experiencing.

What would you say to someone who has found out they have relapsing MS?

Welcome to the family. You now have a new family who will be here for you and who will understand exactly what you are going through. We are all here for you!!!!!

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