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Voices: How Will You Embrace Joy in 2018?

Voices: How Will You Embrace Joy in 2018?

After the heartbreak of 2017’s disasters, we all need a mental health break. What will you do in 2018 to increase your happiness? Lori-Ann Holbrook citygirlflare.com “Reaching Out to Others” Next year, I definitely need more joy in my life! In 2017, I went on disability, moved across the country, lost both my parents and was hospitalized for depression. I know, right?! But even with several chronic health conditions, I am grateful for the friends and family who helped me through it all. I create more joy by sticking to my treatment plans, staying busy as a patient advocate and cooking for my family and ...more
A Generation of Giving

A Generation of Giving

Each year as the leaves begin to fall and the weather gets a few degrees cooler, Peyton Holstein of Lake Oswego, Oregon, along with her older brother, Tobias and four of their cousins, begin researching both local and national charity organizations. While it is easy to assume this is for a school assignment, it’s not. Each cousin is readying their pitch for a unique family Thanksgiving tradition. Approximately eight years ago, Peyton and Tobias’ great uncle Ron began donating to different charities in the six cousins’ names for Christmas. When the kids were younger, he chose a charity and presented each ...more
FDA Approves Two New Drugs for Psoriatic Arthritis

FDA Approves Two New Drugs for Psoriatic Arthritis

Good news for the approximately two million Americans with psoriatic arthritis (PsA). Those with active disease now have two new treatment options: the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in December approved both ixekizumab (Taltz) and tofacitinib (Xeljanz) for the treatment of PsA. This is the second approved indication for ixekizumab. The biologic, which is injected, was approved in March 2016 to treat moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis in adults. It can be taken alone or in combination with a traditional disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD), such as methotrexate. This is also the second approved indication for tofacitinib, a so-called targeted DMARD that is taken ...more
An Early Look at the New Psoriatic Arthritis Treatment Guideline

An Early Look at the New Psoriatic Arthritis Treatment Guideline

Physicians will soon have a new guideline for the management of psoriatic arthritis (PsA). This ambitious undertaking, the details of which were presented recently at the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) Annual Meeting, involved a large panel of experts who analyzed and synthesized the best available evidence to create and support the recommendations. The proposed guideline – which contains approximately 80 recommendations – will undergo final review prior to consideration for publication in 2018 in the journals Arthritis Care & Research and Arthritis & Rheumatism. It will help rheumatologists select treatments for their psoriatic arthritis patients based on the best available evidence, especially in light of all the new treatments recently approved for PsA by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). A Need for a PsA Guideline?  “ had formal guidelines for PsA before, but now we have a lot of new treatment options for the management of this disease,” says Jasvinder Singh, MD, head of the panel ...more
Become a PARTNER to Help Find a Cure

Become a PARTNER to Help Find a Cure

Juvenile arthritis (JA) affects nearly 300,000 kids and families in the United States. Of all the forms of arthritis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is the most common type of arthritis in children. For almost seven decades, the Arthritis Foundation has upheld our unwavering promise to assist them and their caregivers. In an ongoing effort to include the patient voice in everything we do, we’re asking you – patients, parents, loved ones and others with a connection to JIA – to tell us what JIA research matters to you. The Arthritis Foundation is a member of PARTNERS, a network of patients, parents, ...more
Research Identifies Which RA Patients May Successfully Reduce Their Biologics

Research Identifies Which RA Patients May Successfully Reduce Their Biologics

A new study presented recently at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the American College of Rheumatology identifies four factors that may predict which rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients might successfully taper the dose of their biologic medication. Although biologics are highly effective in controlling RA and its symptoms, patients in some cases prefer not to use them. Past studies have shown that it is possible to taper and even stop the medication in certain patients who are in remission once they have been successfully treated with one of these drugs. Reducing the dose of biologics is attractive for several reasons. These drugs are ...more
Type 2 Diabetes Risk May Be Higher With RA

Type 2 Diabetes Risk May Be Higher With RA

People who have rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are known to be more likely to develop other serious health problems, including heart disease, lung disease and some types of cancer. Now a recent study in the online journal PLOS One appears to indicate they also have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Lead study author Piero Ruscitti, MD, of the University of L’Aquila in Italy, writes that he and his colleagues undertook the study to show that type 2 diabetes is common but often overlooked in RA patients. For the study, the researchers followed 439 people with newly-diagnosed RA for one year, evaluating ...more
When A Back or Neck Ache Means You Have OA

When A Back or Neck Ache Means You Have OA

Maybe you overdid it cleaning the house or sprucing up your garden this weekend. Or you’re using a hot or cold pack on your lower back more often over the past few months. Does the pain come and go or seem to be getting worse? Then, it might be time ask your doctor if you have osteoarthritis (OA) in your spine (that runs from the neck to the lower back). As you age, the cartilage lining the joints of your spine wears down, allowing the bones to rub together, causing back pain and stiffness. Other causes of spinal OA include injury, ...more
You Said It: The Most Unexpected Side Effects of RA

You Said It: The Most Unexpected Side Effects of RA

We asked our readers and followers this question: “What was the most unexpected side effect of your rheumatoid arthritis or RA treatment?” Here are their answers. I was shocked to be diagnosed at 47. I have an immensely high pain tolerance, but the shocker to me is how high the pain level is during a flare. I also have been surprised at how long it takes to find the right treatment combo. — Karyn Corson, Saratoga Springs, New York For me, I was surprised to get scleritis, the inflammation of the white part of the eye, which they treat with prednisone drops. Then ...more
AOII: Celebrating 50 Years as a “Champion of Yes”

AOII: Celebrating 50 Years as a “Champion of Yes”

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Arthritis Foundation’s partnership with Alpha Omicron Pi (AOII) women’s fraternity. AOII’s unwavering commitment has helped the foundation serve millions of adults and children with arthritis through research, advocacy and community-based programs. “We are so honored and proud to partner with such a worthy organization,” says Gayle Fitzpatrick, AOII’s International President. “For 50 years, we’ve stayed committed to the Foundation’s cause; raising money and providing hands-on support for camps, community initiatives and fundraising events.” Community service is one of AOII’s founding principles. They adopted the Arthritis Foundation as its international philanthropy in 1967 because of ...more