There are an estimated 400,000 people with multiple sclerosis (MS) in the United States. Many rely on an informal caregiver for assistance. Caregivers are more likely than non-caregivers to report feelings of social isolation. Rural MS caregivers are especially prone to these feelings of isolation. We conducted in-depth interviews with rural caregivers of veterans with MS and used a grounded theory approach to data collection and analysis to illustrate some properties and dimensions of social isolation in a rural MS caregiving sample. These properties include: isolation and the rural environment; isolation from family; isolation from friends; and isolation from the person for whom they provide care.

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