Neuromyelitis Optica Awareness Month


By the Governor of Alabama

WHEREAS, Neuromyelitis Optica (NMO) is a rare autoimmune disorder in which the immune system cells and antibodies primarily attack the optic nerves and spinal cord; and

WHEREAS, NMO causes damage to the optic nerves and spinal cord which can lead to inflammation, pain, loss of vision, weakness, paralysis in the legs and arms, loss of sensation, and problems with bladder and bowel function; and

WHEREAS, NMO is more common in women than men by 80 percent, and occurs in all parts of the world; and

WHEREAS, NMO can occur at any age in children as young as 3 and adults as old as 90, and is most common between the ages of 40-50; and

WHEREAS, early diagnosis of NMO is critical, and if untreated can lead to devastating and irreversible effects, and while there is no cure for NMO, with early detection, individuals diagnosed can receive medical attention; and

WHEREAS, it is important to improve public awareness of NMO so it can be diagnosed at the earliest stage possible and proper treatment can begin:

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Robert Bentley, Governor of Alabama, do hereby March 2017, as

Neuromyelitis Optica Awareness Month

in the State of Alabama in support of patients, families, advocates, researchers and medical professionals. I encourage all Alabamians to support those who dedicate their time and expertise to raise awareness regarding this disorder.

Given Under My Hand and the Great Seal of the Office of the Governor at the State Capitol in the City of Montgomery on the 1st day of March 2017.

Robert Bentley