Friday, May 03, 2013

Uthoff’s Phenomena and summer fun with MS

As a caregiver it can be hard to shake the feeling that the person you care for is always better off when you are around.

Earlier this week I arrived at Patti’s care facility to take her for a push and roll and some dinner. Instead I was surprised to find her sleeping.

Reflectively I put my hand to her forehead to check for a fever. Her eyes blinked open, “I am trying to sleep because I feel like shit - I do not have a fever, you idiot man”. … Hi there and nice to see you too Patti!

Laughing I go get her a cup of ice and ginger ale with a flexible straw. Playing around with bed adjustments we settled in to watch the end of “Ellin” followed by “The Simpsons”.

Glancing above her bed I noticed the oversized room thermometer is near 80˚F(27˚C).  May is the time of year Uthoff’s Phenomena annually rears its pain in the butt head.

Opening her windows, her room cools rapidly toward 70˚F(21 ˚C), assisted dinning staff detours her tray to her room and I become her personal room service waiter as she enjoys eating dinner to the “The Simpsons.”

Living with MS as a family it’s not always about putting my hand on Patti’s forehead but checking the room and outside temperature.

Again, I would like to thank for inviting me to share longer versions of our story: 

Patrick Leer
Health Activist:
Caregivingly Yours, MS Caregiver @


  1. I just ran into that myself. Driving to DE, the a/c was on, BUT the sun was coming through my side and front window. My legs were so hot when I went to get out of the car, I couldn't move. I mean could. not. move. Fortunately, my husband came to my rescue and grabbed the transport w/c from the trunk. Heat can such a sneaky demon.

    1. Muff! Sooo glad your husband was there. Uthoff's Phenomena take a team!


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