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For Ana Villafañe, the Stage is a Passion, a Career – and Arthritis Therapy

For Ana Villafañe, the Stage is a Passion, a Career – and Arthritis Therapy

On NBC’s TV drama New Amsterdam, Dr. Valentina Castro diagnoses a patient with lupus, an autoimmune disease that causes chronic pain and fatigue. After the cameras stop rolling, Ana Villafañe, who plays Dr. Castro, becomes teary-eyed; the scene cuts close to home, reminding Ana of her own juvenile arthritis diagnosis at the age of 7. As a child, Ana often felt like an out­sider, fighting an invisible illness her peers didn’t understand. But when she was 9, she found her happy place and her calling – singing in talent shows at the Arthritis Foundation’s Camp Funrise in Miami, Florida. “When I’m performing ...more
A Mandate for Action: New Arthritis Data Shows Gaps That Demand Action

A Mandate for Action: New Arthritis Data Shows Gaps That Demand Action

Pain. Sleeplessness. Anxiety. Depression. Not getting your medical needs met. Those are among the top things people with arthritis say they struggle with most. And the magnitude of those issues comes through loud and clear in “A Mandate for Action” — a new report spearheaded by the Arthritis Foundation that captures input from 18,000 responses to the ongoing Live Yes! INSIGHTS assessment. This continuous scientific study, which is patient-centered and patient-driven, is one of the nation’s largest studies of its kind. The results amplify the patient voice to influence — and change — the future of arthritis. For the first time, patient input ...more
Real Talk About Love & Relationships With Arthritis

Real Talk About Love & Relationships With Arthritis

Happy Valentine’s Day! It’s time for real talk about the ways that people with arthritis deal with relationships, love and intimacy as they manage their disease. On Tuesday, Feb 11, The Arthritis Foundation’s Rebecca Gillet (co-host of the Live Yes! With Arthritis podcast) hosted a Facebook Live! event with Meg Maley, a reality TV star from CBS’s Big Brother; actor Clark Middleton, who has a recurring role on NBC’s The Blacklist; Mariah Leach, the founder of Mamas Facing Forward; and Jed Finley, the founder of Living with Ankylosing Spondylitis. They had a frank discussion about their experiences related to love, sex, ...more
February Arthritis News Roundup

February Arthritis News Roundup

We consistently learn more about identifying the symptoms of arthritis and how it affects people’s day-to-day lives. Here are a few inspiring developments in the world of arthritis over the past month. FDA Issues Warnings Related to Arthritis Community The FDA has issued a warning regarding gabapentin and pregabalin, stating they are associated with breathing problems when used with central nervous system depressants or in patients with lung problems. This warning also includes drugs fibromyalgia patients may be taking. Talk to your doctor if this warning may apply to you. Learn more about the drugs used to treat fibromyalgia in the arthritis drug ...more
People Before Politics: Congress Must Solve Surprise Medical Billing

People Before Politics: Congress Must Solve Surprise Medical Billing

When it comes to medical billing, transparency is vital. Individuals undergoing an emergency procedure or surgery often face heavy financial burdens through co-payments and deductibles alone; the stress and anxiety of recovering both physically and mentally from a medical issue already takes a tremendous toll. The last thing a patient needs or wants to deal with when recovering is an unexpected medical bill. Balance billing occurs when a health care provider bills a patient for the difference (the balance) between the provider’s charge for a service and the insurance plan’s payment for the service. The term “surprise medical bill” is used ...more
JA Conference Registration and Travel Awards Are Now Open!

JA Conference Registration and Travel Awards Are Now Open!

Register early and save! Year after year, the Arthritis Foundation’s National Juvenile Arthritis Conference has brought kids with rheumatic diseases and their families together for a weekend full of education, inspiration and connection with others on a similar journey. Join us this summer as two conferences become one epic event. Whether you are new to the JA Conference or returning, we invite you to join us in Orlando at JA Conference 2020. For many families, it may not be feasible to plan for a weekend conference that might include extensive travel. To help with these travel costs, the Arthritis Foundation is pleased to ...more
Live Yes! With Arthritis Podcast: Episode 4 - You Want Me to Exercise?

Live Yes! With Arthritis Podcast: Episode 4 - You Want Me to Exercise?

You should exercise. Sound familiar? I know. I hear you loud and clear. You woke up this morning in pain. Trying to muster enough energy to even get out of bed felt impossible. And getting ready for your day felt like you just ran a 5K. I get it. I have arthritis, too, and I know what you’re thinking. “Wait, didn’t I just wake up? I should have more energy than this! What did I do in my sleep to feel this exhausted? Oh, that’s right. I didn’t sleep well. My ‘pain-somnia’ kept me from getting any good sleep. So ...more
Remission: What Exactly Does it Mean for JIA?

Remission: What Exactly Does it Mean for JIA?

The goal of pediatric rheumatologists and their patients has always been for children diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) to be as healthy as they can be.  With more medicines that work better today than ever before, doctors and families now have a goal of complete disease control.  A patient can have complete disease control, or remission while on or off of medicines. In medical terms, complete disease control or remission means clinical inactive disease (CID) and doctors have this list of things to look at when deciding if a patient is in CID: No joints with active arthritis (swelling, pain, ...more
T2T: Treat To Target for Kids With Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis

T2T: Treat To Target for Kids With Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis

What is Treat to Target (T2T)? Treat to Target is a name for one of the ways we take care of kids who have juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) to get better results. T2T works by making providers, patients, and their care-givers partners in setting goals.   The first step is when everyone on the team talks about treatment goals and personal goals.  When everyone agrees on goals, they can work together to make a plan.  This helps patients feel like they have more control.  The hope is that patients will be more active and happy.  Their disease can get better, the side ...more
Arthritis Foundation-CARRA Transdisciplinary Research Grant Recipients

Arthritis Foundation-CARRA Transdisciplinary Research Grant Recipients

The Arthritis Foundation recently funded two new Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance (CARRA) transdisciplinary research grants. Dr. Joyce Chang and Dr. Natoshia Cunningham have been awarded two years of funding for each of their projects. Dr. Chang’s project relates to care for adolescents with chronic rheumatic diseases as they transition to adult care. Dr. Cunningham’s study will examine cognitive behavioral therapy as a way for kids with childhood-onset systemic lupus erythematosus (cSLE) to manage fatigue, pain and depression. Joyce Chang, MD, MSCE Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Measuring Post-Transfer Outcomes and Building a Framework to Implement Structured Transition Processes Across Rheumatic Diseases This is ...more