A Triumph Over MS: Kristen’s Acupuncture Awakening

A Triumph Over MS: Kristen's Acupuncture Awakening

A Triumph Over MS: Kristen Gray’s Acupuncture Awakening

Meet Kristen Gray, a resilient spirit whose life took an unexpected turn when she was diagnosed with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PPMS) at the young age of 39. Faced with a challenging prognosis, a family, and doctors who refused to listen to her, Kristen embarked on a journey that led her to explore alternative treatments, eventually discovering the transformative power of acupuncture.

In 2007, Kristen was married to the man of her dreams and had a 2-year-old daughter.  She had everything she wanted. Then one day when she was at the park with her husband, she lost her ability to walk. “I had to crawl across a field to get to my husband and say, ‘I can’t walk.’ It was terrifying”, she said.


Uncharted Paths: Navigating MS Without Answers from Western Medicine

They immediately went to an Orthopedic doctor and Kristen was told that she had a completely healthy spine, but she needed to see a neurologist. That is where she got diagnosed with PPMS before she was even 40.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, inflammatory, and neurodegenerative disease that attacks the healthy tissue in your nervous system—particularly your optic nerve, brain, and spinal cord. Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PPMS), is when the disease gradually worsens from the time of first presentation and there are no relapses.  Neurological functioning decreases with consistent symptoms and there is little to no improvement or change.

Kristen was now faced with numerous symptoms. “I would shiver, shake, seize and lose all strength. I was cold all the time, and I was no longer able to walk down a flight of stairs or get down on the floor to play with my daughter. I didn’t have any control of my right leg. It would spasm and cramp. And then there was the fog brain, the forgetfulness, and the loss of memory,” she said.

For the next 16 years, Kristen went on a journey to find a doctor that could help her. The first doctor told her to “prepare for the worst” and that she would be in a wheelchair within five years.

The second doctor was not much better. He told Kristen to stop trying to have more children. He prescribed her drugs that were designed for cancer patients, not for expecting mothers.

“Every week for 6 months I would administer a shot into my stomach 3 times a week. I would take a shot, feel like crap, and recover just in time to take another shot,” she said.

A few months into her treatment, her doctors told her to stop taking her shots immediately. She found out a month later that the doctor had misread her charts and wanted to put her back on her shots again. At this point, Kristen wasn’t seeing improvement in her symptoms, she constantly felt sick from her shots, and now had lost faith in her medical doctors.


Empowering Your Health: Taking Charge of MS Beyond Traditional Medical Approaches

Kristen decided to take her health into her own hands. She focused on exercise, nutrition and natural supplements.   Kristen was working to find a good balance for the things she could control, and those she could not.  Her husband went back to school and Kristen went back to work.  She fortunately had a good support system and was able to meet the needs of her family.

Unfortunately, the cold weather in Colorado was a surprise factor in her MS difficulties. She was not motivated to be outside; the fierceness of the winter affected her mobility and her cognitive abilities.  It acted like a vice on her legs and left her unable to be mobile.  She was “frozen” by the weather, and it just made everyday tasks almost unmanageable.  It is important to note that for some MS patients the severity of the weather can play against their care and treatment. As a result, the winters were unbearable, and Kristen’s family decided to make a choice that changed everything. “I packed up 2 cars, 2 cats, 2 dogs, a preschooler and a life, and headed to Arizona in March 2011”, says Kristen.

Fortunately, the gamble paid off.  Kristen felt like she “thawed out” once she got to Arizona and daily saw the improvement to her health and well-being.  She was making life work, with the new surroundings and thrilled her family agreed to the move.

Life continued to roll along- over the next decade, Kristen was able to manage her MS with common sense, supplements, balanced nutrition and exercise, massages and no medications. While there were still issues – her right leg continued to spasm, she was still aware of the cold, she was tired, and had to use a stick during walks, she could not climb stairs very well. The family grew to recognize that while Kristen had MS – the MS didn’t have Kristen.


Revitalizing Hope: Acupuncture as a Holistic Approach to Manage MS Symptoms

In March 2023, Kristen started her acupuncture sessions, initially seeking stress relief but soon finding a tailored plan to address her MS symptoms. The results were nothing short of remarkable. From reducing spasms to regaining warmth in her feet, each session brought tangible improvements.

One particularly groundbreaking moment involved a scalp acupuncture treatment, revealing astonishing results within minutes. Kristen’s renewed abilities allow her to engage in activities that were once challenging, from extended exercise sessions to regaining strength and experiencing an overall sense of calmness and clarity.

Kristen’s story stands as a powerful testament to the potential of acupuncture in managing MS symptoms. Through her journey, she not only found relief but also a renewed quality of life. “Receiving Acupuncture treatments from the Phoenix Institute of Herbal Medicine & Acupuncture has given me a good quality of life, and I am so thankful that I have this opportunity to share my story and give back because everybody needs to know about Acupuncture. It is awesome”, she says. Kristen shares her triumph over adversity with the hope that it will help others on a similar path.

    1 Comment

  1. March 27, 2024

    It’s really a nice and useful piece of info. I am glad that you shared this helpful information with us. Please keep us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

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