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April 1982

The Role of Disease and Demographic Factors in the Employment of Patients With Multiple Sclerosis

Author Affiliations

From the Multiple Sclerosis Comprehensive Care Center of the Neurology Department, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY (Drs LaRocca, Kalb, and Scheinberg), and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (Dr Kendall).

Arch Neurol. 1982;39(4):256. doi:10.1001/archneur.1982.00510160062016

The onset of multiple sclerosis (MS) in 90% of all cases occurs between the ages of 15 and 50 years. The disorder therefore strikes persons during the peak years of education, career development, and family life. How one reacts to this illness seems to depend not only on the characteristics of the disease, but also on the attributes of the person, such as premorbid personality, educational level, and the quality of the social/family network.

When evaluating any person's level of functioning and quality of life, productive employment is an essential component. We have reported an 80% level of unemployment found in a survey of 257 patients at the MS centers.1 Clinical work at the center has shown that physical disability is certainly not the only, or even the primary, cause of unemployment. The goal of the present study was to identify (1) the degree to which physical disability is

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