I'm sorry you've gotten the diagnosis. Is there any chance that instead of also having fibro, that the symptoms you've been experiencing all along are related to your having MS? It certainly would be easier to have to manage just one disease, than two.
At any rate, many of us here are on one or the other of the drugs now being prescribed for MS. Sandy described it pretty well: since MS is a progressive disease, and since any flare or exacerbation or progression (not all progression is apparent through experiencing a flare!) can lead to increased disability,
I do whatever I can, to slow the course of the disease. I've had MS for nearly 24 years, now. I've been on Betaseron for the last 12 (it only came on the market about 15 years ago).
Sure, sticking yourself with a needle is never comfortable. There are lots of folks who will help you learn how to do it, and over time, it becomes routine. The side effects of the interferon-based medicines (Rebif, Avonex, Betaseron) can be unpleasant, but are manageable. Copaxone has some side effects, too, but again, they're manageable.
The GOOD news is that there is a choice! You can start with one, and if it really becomes too difficult, you can switch to another. You can study the materials and decide whether you want to deal with one injection a week, or every other day, or daily, how the different requirements of the meds might fit into your lifestyle (some require refrigeration, others don't), whether you'll need assistance to inject (and how comfortable your helper will be with the various kinds of injections -- muscular, or under the skin).
And again...if one doesn't seem comfortable for you, there's a choice. Not that many years ago, there was no viable treatment for MS at all.
I think I am probably one of a very few people who post on this site who takes Avonex. I love the fact that it is once a week. At first, in December, I felt lousy after taking it, now I feel really pretty good. It is mild enough that I am not really able to distinguish it from the general symptoms I always have with MS. I will say that it is a long needle. I weighed that against the more than once a week meds and went with the one that was less frequent. I am very happy with the Avonex thus far. I ice my thigh for 10 - 15 minutes before I do the injection and I don't even feel the needle. I take Advil and a Xanax 1/2 an hour before I give the injection and I get through it just fine. I can now do it early in the afternoon and still feel up to going out for the evening. It does make you feel empowered to be doing something to combat the disease. 30% is pretty good odds in my book. I've gambled plenty when the odds were a lot worse than that!
It's a really hard choice and most doctors have a preference of meds. There is a ton of info here and on other websites on the medication choices. Just read up and know that you can always change if it doesn't work out for you with the first one you choose.
Good luck and lots of prayers!
Now I am just getting frustrated. When I saw the doctor Friday, he told me to come tuesday and we will discuss the meds and what I should be taking. I go in today and he tells me that he has decided that HE isn't ready to treat the MS. He tells me today that he is 85% sure I have MS, but he won't do anything until he is 95% sure I have it.
I told my husband that I am seriously considering ignoring all of it and not go back to any doctor, but if I did that, he would probably get really mad at me and then I would never hear the end of it. I just want to scream and cry and throw things until I start feeling better, but I know it won't help. I am hoping the little vent does the trick, but as of yet it hasn't. Did any of you have trouble getting a doctor to treat your MS?