About the Author

2499507f771647a3-galaGilAfter graduating with high honors from the Harvard Law School in 1994 and clerking on federal district and circuit courts, Gil worked on litigation matters as an associate and partner at the Washington

DC law firm, Williams & Connolly LLP,  from 1996 to 2010.  His cases included assisting in the firm’s defense of former President Bill Clinton in investigations and the Senate Impeachment trial, individual-volunteer representation of former Vice President Al Gore in the 2000 election crisis, defense of a union president against charges of association with organized crime, and more than six years representing a professional firm in the Enron matter. Gil ended legal practice in 2010 and currently assists the firm with the training of younger lawyers and with issues involving electronic discovery.

Born in Massachusetts in 1967, Gil grew up in South Charleston, West Virginia, and moved to Bellevue, Washington, where he attended Interlake High School, graduating in 1985.  He attended Columbia University in New York City and worked in Manhattan as a legal assistant.  In 1994, in his third year at Harvard Law School, Gil was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

GIL’S MS MEDICATION and SYMPTOM FACTS

When someone tells me that they or a friend have MS, my mind immediately turns to what medications they have used.

Here is my quick summary of mine:

  • Diagnosed April 1994
  • Used steroid infusions for exacerbations
  • Added Avonex shots around 1997
  • Switched to Betaseron and Copaxone
  • Went off drugs waiting for roll out of Tysabri
  • Tysabri removed from market for a year by FDA due to adverse interaction wih Avonex
  • Started Tysabri around 2006 — no new lesions while on Tysabri
  • Went off Tysabri in 2012 because doctors felt it was risky to take it so long
  • Began Tecfidera
  • New lesions on my frontal lobe
  • Did CCSVI angioplastyin 2009 — significant vein narrowing found — no benefit experienced from treatment
  • Tysabri was very effective for me, but it is a powerful drug with risks that are closely monitored. Many more options are now available, but I believe without Tysabri I would have had many more active lesions and further damage.
  • Currently doing monthly Solumedrol infusiions and waiting for my white blood cell count to raise high enough that I can go back on Tysabri.

SYMPTOM FACTS

  • Severe heat sensitivity. Starting at 72 degrees F and worsening with every degree, numbness and pain commence then disorientation and blackouts. Humidity is exponentially worse. Air conditioning is not a complete solution but helps.
  • Weakness and foot drop in left leg — My walking ability has declined by about fifty percent a year. I am now only able to walk with a walkler or crutches up to about 50 paces under ideal conditions. I am using various physical and other treatments which will be described in other posts. These include at least four training sessions per week in Pilates and GYROTRONIC exercise at Studio Evolve in Seattle — studio-evolve.com.  I began using an electric wheelchair in Jan. 2016.
  • Eventual numbness and weakness in both legs when walking
  • Fatigue
  • Cannot type for long periods
  • Bladder urgency and failure to empty fully
  • Concentration and difficulty managing multiple tasks
  • Sleeping difficulty
  • No pain absent heat! No visual issues! A fortunate man indeed.
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