When Mariah Aquino-Truss was just five years old, she was in so much pain each day she told her mom, Tory, that she “didn’t want to be here anymore.” Imagine hearing such an admission from your young daughter who was newly diagnosed with a form of juvenile arthritis (JA) known as polyarticular spondyloarthropathy.
Polyarticular spondyloarthropathy is a juvenile form of ankylosing spondylitis, a chronic, long term disease that affects the joints, ligaments, tendons and entheses. Shocked, saddened and ferociously determined to help Mariah and her family, Tory set out to find help – a road that led her to the Arthritis Foundation.
Continue reading A Dream Come True – Meet Our 2017 National Youth Honoree Mariah Aquino-Truss
Kathryn Sundquist is 16 years old, lives in Brainerd, Minnesota and has juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. To say she and her family live active lifestyles would be an understatement. Her mom enjoys yoga, running and participating in triathlons. Her dad is an avid biker. Her adult brothers enjoy 4-wheeling, hunting, fishing, and tennis. They all enjoy any reason to be outside!
Continue reading Fundraising is a Family Endeavor for Kathryn Sundquist, Our 2017 Walk to Cure Arthritis National Young Adult Honoree
As a believer in living a full life and being a Champion of Yes, we asked Tom Walker – who has experienced highs and lows and endured it all – a few lighthearted, personal questions.
Continue reading Up Close and Personal with our Walk to Cure Arthritis National Adult Honoree Tom Walker
Born on July 4, Geoff and Sara Morthland called red-haired Ellery their “firecracker,” but at 19 months old, only Ellery’s knees were inflamed. They soon discovered the reason: juvenile arthritis (JA).
“I felt so powerless, Sara Morthland, Ellery’s mother, said. “I couldn’t make it go away.”
The Baton Rouge, Louisiana resident turned emotion into action and searched for a fundraiser supporting an arthritis cure. When she discovered Walk to Cure Arthritis, Sara was elated—only to learn Louisiana did not have a Walk.
Continue reading Volunteer Kick-Starts Successful Louisiana Walk To Cure Arthritis Event
Tom Walker, Walk to Cure Arthritis national adult honoree and former MLB pitcher, claims that it’s truly “mind over matter” when it comes to his osteoarthritis (OA) pain. Every day, he rises up and pushes forward, despite the obstacles – like having a harder time walking – that challenge him.
Continue reading Meet Our National Walk to Cure Arthritis Adult Honoree: Former MLB Pitcher Tom Walker!
Until last summer, Ellie Pruitt was your typical little girl who loved to swing, draw with chalk on the driveway and feed the fish and turtles in the pond at the back of her house in Canton, Georgia, a suburb north of Atlanta. She was funny, smart and especially witty for a soon-to-be 4-year-old (and soon-to-be big sister).
But almost a year ago, Ellie started complaining about her legs hurting all the time and feeling tired. She started playing with her toys at the kitchen table because it was too painful to play on the floor. She couldn’t sit with her legs and feet crossed, unable to bend her knees 90 degrees. Her parents thought it might just be growing pains.
Continue reading Meet the Pruitts, Warriors Against Juvenile Arthritis: “We’ve got to be upbeat and positive”
Her journey with arthritis began as a 21-year-old college student. One morning, April N. West woke up feeling like she had exercised vigorously the day before. The pain in her ankles, knees and hips was unbearable. Then without health insurance, she relied on over-the-counter medication for relief, but the pain didn’t go away.
While visiting family in Florida, April remembers coughing so profusely that she had to rest on their couch the entire time. At that point, she knew something was seriously wrong – and soon found herself hospitalized. After much deliberation, her doctors all agreed that an autoimmune illness was causing her body to attack her joints and vital organs, including her lungs.
Continue reading Quest-4-West: National Walk Honoree Doesn’t Let Arthritis Slow Her Down
If you think how far we’ve come in treating children with arthritis over the past two decades is nothing short of miraculous, get ready for some spectacular new discoveries in the not too distant future. That’s what Dr. Yukiko Kimura firmly believes – and she should know, since she’s been on the front lines of treating juvenile arthritis (JA) and other childhood rheumatic diseases for more than 25 years.
Dr. Kimura is the chief of pediatric rheumatology at the Joseph Sanzari Children’s Hospital at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey. She earned her MD from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York and did her pediatric rheumatology fellowship at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in NYC. The Arthritis Foundation supported her early training with a fellowship research award.
Continue reading Walk to Cure Arthritis: From Small Steps to Giant Breakthroughs
To say that Parker Lentini’s life has been like riding a roller coaster the past few years may be an understatement. He and his family have endured more nerve-wracking ups and downs than most people experience in a lifetime. Yet it’s their hope and faith, and trying to hold on to the highs they encounter along the way, that help them get through the low spots, when it feels like their lives have been turned upside down. Again.
Parker, who’s 16 and lives with his family in Tampa, has been hospitalized more than two dozen times since he was diagnosed six years ago with systemic onset juvenile arthritis (sJA) – with “overlapping conditions,” as well as hypogammaglobulinemia, severe allergies and asthma.
Continue reading Their Unshakable Spirit: Why Parker and His Family Walk to Cure Arthritis
Cathy McHorse is one amazing parent, inspired to get involved in the fight against arthritis after her son Grant was diagnosed at age 12 with juvenile arthritis. A simple newspaper article about Austin’s Walk to Cure Arthritis prompted Cathy to make contact with her local Arthritis Foundation office in 2011, nearly three years after Grant’s initial diagnosis.
Continue reading Austin’s Cathy McHorse Is All In for the Arthritis Foundation!