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Book Review: Multiple Sclerosis Manifesto
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Multiple Sclerosis Manifesto
Julie Stachowiak, PhD

Multiple Sclerosis ManifestoBook Details:
Publisher: Demos Health; 1st edition (January 26, 2010)
ISBN: 1932603441 / 9781932603446
Paperback: 360 pages, Softcover
Size: 8.7 x 5.6 x 1 inches
Price: $23.95
Where to buy: Demos Medical


In addition to its informational content, the principal merit of the book by Stachowiak is the ability to hold the reader’s attention. There are a lot of books to tell us about many MS aspects and how to handle situations. Nevertheless, such a reading is not necessarily easy as it is read not only because one has to but because he/she is interested in the stuff. A newly diagnosed person with MS who is shocked and feels fully unaware of what to expect will find the book very valuable, since it can reach and fill the person’s heart with the will to win.

The author makes good use of both the popular language writing and indispensable medical science terms to express her point of view and approach infinite issues arising in the course of the disease. Oftentimes, these seemingly insignificant issues are ignored by professionals and writers of other guidances and papers, because it requires an aspect of personal experience and understanding of the situation. The author of the book has got such an experience, which helps the description and resolving the problem with a thorough feeling. This sort of approach is more efficient and acceptable for patients. Therefore, there is definitely a subjective component in the relation, yet this is the key to resolve challenging questions that some writers tend to avoid because of their indirect involvement.

However, each MS experience is unique and has its own wide range of challenges, which makes it practically impossible to answer all questions of a single PwMS alone. Yet, the book reveals that MS is no end of life but merely another period of life with a more complex strategy. In this regard, the author successfully combines strategy action recommendations and strategies to build the patient’s psychological reaction. The book gets the reader engaged as compared to distant advices found in MS editions of the kind. This personal involvement has often brought me to reassessing the problem with respect to me. Another significance is that MS patients normally are uncomfortable to discuss MS, since in doing so they have to experience those hard feelings again, but the book teaches how to overcome oneself in despite of overwhelming emotions and to hear through the answer to an painful question.

I did like the author to offer strategies rather than panic. I would add that she sends a message of positivism and audacity to ‘live with it’.

About the Reviewer:

Pavel Zlobin

Pavel Zlobin
Vice President for International Affairs
All-Russian Public Organization of Disabled People with Multiple Sclerosis (All-Russian MS Society)
  • 2009: He joined the Editorial Board of MS in focus, MSIF
  • 2008: He translated The Principles to Promote the Quality of Life of People with Multiple Sclerosis into Russian
  • 2007: He took the office of the Vice President for International Affairs at the All-Russian MS Society
  • 2004: He entered the Institute for Health Research at Lancaster University pursuing an MPhil degree, UK. Not graduated.
  • 2004: He worked for the Saratov nongovernmental organization ‘Japan Center’, Russia
  • 1999-2003: He worked for the Saratov nongovernmental organization ‘Center for International Understanding’, Russia
  • 1999: He started to work in the Third/Voluntary Sector on graduating from the Teachers’ Training Institute and finishing the Music College.

While working at the voluntary organizations and doing my postgraduate studies I attended conferences, meetings, seminars, and schools in:

  • Melbourne, Australia (2001)
  • Lancaster, UK (2004)
  • Brussels, Belgium (2004, 2006, 2008, 2009)
  • Washington, USA (2005)
  • Novosibirsk, Russia (2007)
  • Noordwijk, Netherlands (2007)
  • Reykjavik, Iceland (2008)
  • London, UK (2009, 2009)

About the Author:

Julie Stachowiak, PhD, is’s Multiple Sclerosis Guide. In 1993 she co-founded one of the first non-governmental AIDS/HIV organizations in Russia. AIDS infoshare has grown to be the most influential non-governmental organization dealing with the HIV epidemic in Russia. Julie left this organization when she was diagnosed with MS in 2004. Her work with the AIDS community informed her embrace of her own disease and her political stance on living with a chronic condition. She is a contributing author of myriad books and earned her doctorate degree in International Disease Control and Prevention from Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health.

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