Differences in Care for Millennial Patients With MS: Mitzi Joi Williams, MD

Disease Spotlight | <b>Disease Spotlight: Multiple Sclerosis</b>

As the MS patient population includes more patients from the millennial generation, the founder and CEO of the Joi Life Wellness Group Multiple Sclerosis Center offered her insight on the way care differs for this generation compared with prior ones. [WATCH TIME: 4 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 4 minutes

“In some cases, the younger patients are more willing to take risks than some of the older patients in terms of side effects with some of the treatments. When we think about our high-efficacy treatments, we think about more potentially serious side effects. There are many who are willing— because they're at the height of their careers or want to have a family in the future—to go with some of those treatments that are higher efficacy that may have more potential adverse effects because they do want to be aggressive with the disease.”

As the millennial generation—those born between 1980 and 1995—moves closer to middle age, the percentage of the multiple sclerosis (MS) patient population made up of these individuals is increasing. With them, they bring generational differences, which, when coupled with the massive advances the field has taken since the turn of the century, require the occasional shift in approach to patient communication.

Mitzi Joi Williams, MD, board-certified neurologist and multiple sclerosis specialist, and founder and CEO, Joi Life Wellness Group Multiple Sclerosis Center, sees a number of millennial patients in her clinical care routine. She shared her experience with NeurologyLive in an interview, pointing to the potential differences of this group with regard to making therapeutic choices and the potential adverse effects associated with them.

Williams offered up insight into the care of these patients and detailed how the advances in MS care over the last 2 decades have helped make the process of shared decision-making smoother for this group. She also spoke to the millennial knowledge base about the disease, and how sometimes offering less information at first can be more fruitful than providing all of it at once.