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Spring 2018 Childhood Research Grants Announced

Spring 2018 Childhood Research Grants Announced

We recently gave approximately $160,000 toward childhood arthritis research in the form of research grants. The grants are funded through the Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance (CARRA); small grants were given to pediatric rheumatologists and fellows small grant research awards were given to third year fellowship students. Spring Small Grants Three small grants of $25k each were awarded. Congratulations to: Erica Lawson, University of California, San Francisco (CA): The Impact of Pediatric-to-adult Care Transition on Health Care Utilization and Medication Adherence among Youth Sheila Angeles-Han, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (OH): Measuring Vision-related Function and Quality of Life in Children with ...more
Arthritis Misdiagnosis

Arthritis Misdiagnosis

For 20 years, Frances Muller’s rheumatoid arthritis (RA) was misdiagnosed. A neurologist told her the pain in her hands was carpal tunnel syndrome. An internist told her the all-over aches were the flu. An orthopaedic surgeon said she had bursitis in both shoulders. “None of my symptoms made any sense,” and none of the treatments helped, says Muller, who lives in Scottsdale, Ariz. After she’d seen 13 other doctors, an orthopaedic surgeon who ordered an X-ray of her pelvis finally figured it out: there was no way she could have so much damage to her hips and not have RA. Misdiagnosis ...more
TAKE CARE: Advocacy Blog Series

TAKE CARE: Advocacy Blog Series

President Trump’s Drug Pricing Blueprint We’re excited to continue our advocacy blog series meant to help you take care when it comes to important arthritis health care and coverage issues. If you are just now tuning into this series, check out our previous blog posts on accumulator adjustment programs and pharmacist gag orders. This week, read on to learn more about President Trump’s drug pricing blueprint and the different policy areas that the plan addresses. Why did the Administration decide to release a drug pricing blueprint? On Friday, May 11 the Administration released its long-awaited plan, “Putting Patients First,” intended to help lower drug ...more
Genetically Modified Foods: What You Should Know

Genetically Modified Foods: What You Should Know

When you have arthritis, you know that what you put in your body has a huge impact on your health and well being. Maybe you’ve seen foods in grocery stores marked “Non GMO” or heard the debate over genetically modified organisms, and you may be wondering if you should avoid them. Opponents say foods with GMOs may be harmful, and a law was passed in 2016 requiring labels on them. Some manufacturers are voluntarily labeling their products. But experts say safety concerns are overblown. “There is a lot of confusion and fear surrounding GMO ingredients in foods,” says registered dietitian Kim ...more
Help the World Get a Grip on Arthritis During Arthritis Awareness Month

Help the World Get a Grip on Arthritis During Arthritis Awareness Month

May is National Arthritis Awareness Month, and we’re asking you to join us in our fight against the world’s most prevalent disease. Arthritis is the number one cause of disability in the United States, affecting one in every four adults, nearly 300,000 children and countless families and loved ones. The physical pain it causes can make everyday tasks difficult if not impossible. Perhaps worst of all, arthritis steals quality of life, preventing people from doing the things they love, like favorite hobbies or activities and even simple pleasures like picking up their child. That’s why we’ve launched our Let’s Get a Grip ...more
FDA Advisory Panel Recommends Softening “Celebrex” Safety Labeling

FDA Advisory Panel Recommends Softening “Celebrex” Safety Labeling

A U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory panel concluded that prescription pain medication celecoxib (Celebrex), marketed by Pfizer, is as safe as other common nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) when it comes to cardiovascular (CV) risks. The panel recommended updating the medicine’s safety labeling to reflect that. Celecoxib is a selective COX-2 inhibitor, which means it blocks production of an enzyme associated with inflammation. “Nonselective” NSAIDs, such as naproxen and ibuprofen, block both COX-1 and COX-2; by blocking COX-1, they give rise to gastrointestinal (GI) side effects. Celecoxib is often prescribed to patients with osteoarthritis (OA) or an inflammatory type of ...more
Use Goal Setting to Motivate Your Arthritis Workout

Use Goal Setting to Motivate Your Arthritis Workout

You might exercise to improve function, gain strength or slim down. Whatever your reason, “setting a goal can give you focus, confidence and motivation,” says Hannah J. Bennett, a physical therapist with Baylor Scott & White Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation in Round Rock, Texas. But how can you tell if your workouts are working? The key is making realistic and specific milestones. “Check your progress regularly,” says Bennett. Seeing results can provide motivation – or signal that it’s time to switch things up. Here are four common fitness goals and how to track them. GOAL: Increase Strength HOW TO MEASURE IT: Count how ...more
Rheumatoid Arthritis Flares: The Ups and Downs of Pregnancy

Rheumatoid Arthritis Flares: The Ups and Downs of Pregnancy

For some women with RA, pregnancy brings on an unexpected bonus: improved symptoms. Approximately 70% of women with RA experience improved symptoms in the second trimester that can last through the first 6 weeks after delivery, says J. Bruce Smith, MD, assistant compliance officer for research at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia and a rheumatologist whose research has focused largely on autoimmune disease and pregnancy. There are several theories why disease symptoms improve, including increased anti-inflammatory cytokine levels and hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy. Exactly why some women with RA improve while others don’t is unknown, but a study out ...more
You Said It: Motivational Quotes

You Said It: Motivational Quotes

We asked our readers and followers “What Is Your Favorite Motivational Quote to Inspire You?” Here are their answers. The 1,000 mile journey begins with the first step. Begin, the rest is easy. — John Wilson, Cocoa, Florida Courage isn’t always a roar; sometimes it’s a quiet voice at the end of the day saying I’ll try again tomorrow. — Amanda Thurow, Fernie, British Columbia What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. — Julie Hall, Wortham, Missouri We don’t know how strong we really are until being strong is the only choice. — Jadine Sayer via Facebook Nobody can take away your pain, but don’t let pain take away ...more
Try Aromatherapy for Pain Relief

Try Aromatherapy for Pain Relief

Because your sense of smell is linked to the areas of the brain where emotion and memories are processed, you can use scents and fragrant plants to give yourself an emotional boost, relieve pain, and conjure up pleasant memories. “Aromatherapy is effective because it works directly on the amygdala, the brain’s emotional center,” says Mehmet Oz, MD, director of integrative medicine center at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. “This has important consequences because the thinking part of the brain can’t inhibit the effects of the scent, meaning you feel them instantaneously.” Of the many uses of aromatherapy, pain ...more