As part of our vetting process for Arthritis by the Numbers – a collection of verified arthritis facts and figures – we invited patients to comment on the disease section that most affected their lives. After all, they are the experts on how the disease changes and challenges everyday living.
Meet Kathy Geller, who touched many lives during the years she spent as an Arthritis Foundation exercise trainer and education program presenter – a role model for successful self-management. Following, in her own words, is Kathy’s story about living with severe degenerative osteoarthritis (OA) and how the statistics she reviewed in Arthritis by the Numbers relate to her personally.
Continue reading Rethinking Life With Severe Osteoarthritis
A love of cycling seems to run in Tom Baltes’ family. Unfortunately, arthritis does, too.
As one of five children, Tom has watched as two of his siblings have been diagnosed rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and another has had two hip replacements. Tom has osteoarthritis (OA).
“I was first diagnosed with OA in my left knee and lower spine when I retired from the military,” recalls Tom. “I’m a lucky man in that I have not been particularly bothered by arthritis, but my siblings have really struggled with pain. My arthritis is very minimal compared to what they go through.”
Continue reading From Coast to Coast: A Birthday Challenge Leads to Awareness, Funds for Arthritis
Dina Gilmore has many titles — former athlete, artist, arthritis advocate and author, just to name a few. But, the title she’s most proud of is healer.
Dina discovered that she had healing hands when her sister was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.
“I would always give my sister massages at home to help with her pain,” recalls Dina. “I was working a job in sales, and my sister said, ‘you ought to go to massage school.’”
Continue reading Healing Hands: Dina Turns Her Pain Into Helping Others
When arthritis is diagnosed in dogs, many owners with OA feel true empathy. They know what it’s like to have achy, stiff joints, so they make it a top priority to ease their pets’ discomfort.
Carol and Abe
When Carol Pierce of Bucks County, Pa., noticed her dog limping last year, she went right to the vet. The diagnosis: knee osteoarthritis (OA).
Carol has OA, too – in her right wrist. She occasionally takes an over-the-counter, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). But Abe gets the prescription NSAID carprofen (Rimadyl) daily. “I’m not one of those people who just sits around thinking about my aches and pains,” Carol says. “But for Abe, he comes first. He can’t talk, so I make sure his pain is taken care of.”
Continue reading Four People Tell Their Stories of Sharing Osteoarthritis Pain & Relief With Their Dogs
Singer and actress Melba Moore says her pain is gone and now she’s on top of the world.
When Melba Moore recorded her 2013 single, “What Can I Do to Survive,” the iconic singer and actress couldn’t help but think that it could serve as a theme song for her own life, with the physical and emotional challenges she’s overcome.
With her scale-defying voice and incredible stage presence, few of Melba Moore’s fans realized that, for years as she was performing on Broadway and recording chart-topping songs, she was also battling intense arthritis pain in her left knee and right hip.
“I became an expert at putting up a good front when I was on stage performing,” she says.
Melba established herself as a triple threat in the 1960s and ’70s, and she’s still commanding stages and drawing fans with her singing, dancing and acting. Her first big break came in 1967 when she joined the cast of Hair on Broadway, and was later asked to take the lead role vacated by Diane Keaton. Melba went on to star in the 1970 musical Purlie, which led to her Tony award.
Continue reading New Knee, New Hip, New Start- Melba Moore Overcoming Osteoarthritis