Patients Suffering from Multiple Sclerosis to Cycle Across Slovakia

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Bratislava, March 28 (TASR) – Patients suffering from multiple sclerosis will go on a cycle-ride across Slovakia this year again to show their ability to overcome challenges, as part of the third annual project called From the Tatras to the Danube River, TASR learnt on Tuesday.

The project will be held under the auspices of the Health Ministry. One of the disease’s symptoms is poor physical coordination and that’s why it is important to move with this disease, say experts.

Patients and volunteers want to go about 400 kilometres from Liptovska Kokava to Bratislava in six days. The start is scheduled for May 22 and the finish for May 27 at Hviezdoslavovo namestie in Bratislava. Health Minister Tomas Drucker (a Smer-SD nominee) will personally support the project. He will take part in one of the cycling stages.

“I believe that the project will create more awareness among people to the inconspicuous symptoms of multiple sclerosis,” Drucker told a news conference in Bratislava on Tuesday. He wants to show his solidarity with people suffering from this neurological disease by this gesture. “We must show patients that they are not that sick to be ousted to the margins of society,” he added.

The event is organised by the Hope Sclerosis Multiplex Association. “We want to inform the public about this disease through this event,” said the association’s chair Jaroslava Valcekova, stressing the need for a timely diagnosis of the disease.

The route and its individual stages will head from Liptovska Kokava, Lucky (both Zilina region), Povazska Bystrica, via Nove Mesto nad Vahom (both Trencin region) and Trnava to Bratislava. Its organisers want to talk about the disease in each of the towns and educate about the disease’s first symptoms.

About 10,000 people suffer from multiple sclerosis in Slovakia. It affects more women than men. The disease is incurable.