How long do ms people expect to live?

I was reading about J K Rowling’ mother who ‘died of ms aged just 45’. Well, I’m almost 60 and, despite mobility problems - I need support to walk (somebody to lean on or my rollator, I feel very well.
How long do ms people expect to live, with mobility issues but otherwise fit? My father died at the age of 90 and my mother passed away earlier this year aged 100 (and ten days) !

I expect to live as long as I would have if I didn’t have MS, unless I get some nasty infection or something I wouldn’t otherwise have got. But then, we could always get some nasty infection whatever medical conditions we have.

I’m more worried about my diabetes on that score, but my Dad’s strong family history of heart disease is probably a bigger thing to worry about. I’m 52 and have high blood pressure, but no sign of heart problems yet!

My Mum’s family tend to live until their 90 and my Mum is 81, with a new hip and knee. But otherwise good for someone her age.

I haven’t read much about JL Rowling’s Mum. I suspect the ‘died of MS’ is not a statement made by anyone medical. They say, and I choose to believe, that MS affects our lives sometimes radically, but it doesn’t actually kill us in the same way as heart disease or Motor Neurone Disease does. We are more susceptible to things like bladder infections if we have trouble emptying our bladder, which could cause life-threatening issues.

I look expect a long life with more mobility problems etc. I’m not fit to work any more so the things I thought I’d be doing and enjoying when I retired don’t look too realistic.

Hi John

A relative of mine with MS died last year aged 95. She did not have children as the GP told her she should not because she had MS - how things change.

If you worry about how long you might live you might then not live - literally. But sometimes a little tendril of thought sneaks up on us triggered by something in the news, something we read etc. Balance is the key - we all need it. Try watching some comedy, after all isn’t that what life really is?



Who knows my parents are both still alive at the ripe old age of 87 .Dads was dx with spinal problems when he was in his 50,s though his new gp thinks all the other problems he has such as shakes confusion and other nasties he thinks he would go along the ms line.But dad says he,s not having any tests at his age.So if my dad has got ms and he,s 87 then who knows how long i,ve got .But i,m just grateful for everyday i have with my family.Don,t worry about how long you might live just get out and enjoy what yourself. take care x

About as long as the prevailing average at the time. There is evidence MS reduces life-expectancy slightly, but that might be at least partly because of a lifetime on various drugs - all of which have some risks and side-effects. A tiny fraction - like JK’s mum - will die very prematurely because of MS. Just like a few unlucky people will die of flu’.

But I had an aunt who lived to 87 with it (MS, that is, not flu’). And that was certainly in the days before DMDs, and at least part of her life must have been pre-antibiotics, too. Before antibiotics, life expectancy with MS was only about 10 years, because people would die of common infections that are now readily treatable.


MS is a small factor and be more concerned if you smoke, drink, eat rubbish and take no exercise.

I’m really not concerned with the age I die…its just a number. Having said that, I don’t fancy going tomorrow I’ve got some plans in the pipeline.

I’m more concerned about the quality of my life and the way it ends

I’m planning to live forever - so far it’s working :slight_smile: hehe JBK x

I expect to live to around 120 Of course, that wouldn’t be the first thing I’ve got completely wrong !!

(By the way, johnh, is your Fampyra not working for you anymore, after you enjoying such huge success with it before ?!)



MS is a small factor and be more concerned if you smoke, drink, eat rubbish and take no exercise.

[/quote] And never forget, any one of us could get run over by a bus tomorrow… Try not to worry about the future, just enjoy today! xx

Hello everybody!

Every sunrise is a blessing as we live in a world where anything can happen, may it be good or bad.

When the grim reaper calls, theres not a lot we can do. So live your life to the best you can. We dont get a practice run.

The future will happen, with or without us. Thats why i say cheers everyone,“This glass of guiness i,m drinking taste blumin good”

Jane (The Domestic Goddess).x

I expect to live for the rest of my life

Don’t worry about it. Live your life and don’t worry about when you might die. It might be tomorrow or it might be in another 50 years. But the only sure thing is this, you will die one day and do you really want to waste your life worrying about it when you could be actually living it and enjoying yourself?

Take care,


My Dad had a stroke and died aged 69 and my Mum died earlier this year from ovarian cancer aged 75. As for me, I’m 46 now and don’t plan on dying anytime soon, although family carry on as if MS is terminal. They 're expecting me to keep going downhill then eventually die. My mother-in-law is a retired nurse, and I think that’s been her opinion since I was first diagnosed, so naturally the rest of the family think that, too. If I start out-living them, I think they’ll be disappointed. Heather

Hi John

Noone knows how long they will live for.

My uncle had MS and died of cancer in his late 70s. The MS was not mentioned on his death certificate so nothing to do with him having cancer and dying.

Life is for living not worrying about dying. I reckon anyway. Afterall, it’s gonna happen to every living thing on the plant so why worry about it eh?

Take care.

Shazzie xx

Only two things for certain in this life: Tax and death! We can’t do anything about either of them so why worry? One life, live it! xx

Live for today because yesterday is over and tomorrow may never come.

Thought that you died with MS not because of it. Can make us more susceptible to infections which may kill us but it’s not like cancer that can be a direct cause of death.

Thought we MSers were less likely to get cancer because our immune system is on high alert all the time. (may be an advantage after all?).

keep well,

Jen xx

Hi everybody ! Thanks for all the positive posts! I’m not worried about dying (what an adventure that will be!). I should’ve explained that I have to decide on my pension annuity soon, and my life expectancy has a bearing on my decision.

I plan to live about ten years sooner than if I was part of the ‘gereral population’ (that is, people without MS). Now, why would I think that, you may be asking yourselves. Am I the only person who has looked this up, on a day when things weren’t going so very well? Anyway, if anyone has looked, they’d soon find this (on, ironically enough).

“There are many myths about the long term outlook for people with MS. It used to be said that people with MS did not have a shortened life span compared with the general population, and that no-one dies of MS. In fact, it is clear that people with MS die considerably earlier than those without the disease, at least if they do nothing about the illness. A 2004 Danish study analysing a registry of people diagnosed in that country with MS since 1948 showed that people with MS die around 10 years earlier than the general population. They also showed that over half (56%) died from MS. An encouraging feature was that the excess death rate for those with MS compared with the general population fell by the end of the study to about half the rate it was in the mid-1900s. It is likely this represents the fact the multiple sclerosis diagnosis is being made earlier and in more people these days, and possibly the effect of the newer disease-modifying drugs.”

Well, I suppose that since I am on Tysabri, maybe this won’t apply to me. Maybe it will be true in the future, that people won’t die any younger with MS than if they didn’t have it and they won’t die as a result of having MS anymore. But before you leap to this very optimistic conclusion, remember that’s the story we’ve all been told anyway.

As for J. K. Rowling’s mother, the things I’ve read say that she died of complications caused by MS and I’ve always assumed that it was true, partly because J. K. Rowling has said this and also because she gave such a huge financial donation to the Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic at the University of Edinburgh (there’s a clue in the name, folks).

Spend it and have a ball.

Well for godness sake John!! explain yourself better next time.

joking Lol…just found it funny