“I don’t know anyone with arthritis.”
This is the most common answer we heard when we recently asked Americans: How many people do you know who are living with arthritis ?
Ten years ago, Raquel Masco didn’t think she knew anyone with arthritis either. That’s when she began experiencing unusual symptoms. Continue reading It Doesn’t Have to Be Visible to Be Real
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 arthritis changes and challenges everyday living.
Meet Craig Buhr, who is challenged by gout and OA. Following, in his own words, are his thoughts about the statistics he reviewed in Arthritis by the Numbers – and how they relate to him personally.
Continue reading Patient Partner’s Words of Wisdom About Living With Gout & OA
Among patient partners who reviewed Arthritis by the Numbers – a collection of verified arthritis facts and figures – was the Soler family of Georgia. Robin Soler has been active with the Arthritis Foundation ever since her younger daughter, Isabela, was diagnosed with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). At the time she was one of the youngest children in the state to be diagnosed with JIA at just 12 months old.
Over the past 15 years, mother and daughter have seen about 50 different doctors and scores of other medical experts. Isabela has taken at least 20 different types of prescription drugs – consuming more than 15,000 pills in her lifetime, not including antibiotics and other normal childhood drugs. She has missed countless parties and playdates, and one recent semester had to skip 7th period 21 times for doctor’s appointments.
Isabela’s mother, Robin, is a developmental psychologist and senior scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. Robin has had her own personal experience with arthritis, diagnosed with fibromyalgia when she was 26, though her chronic pain goes back to her mid-teens.
After reviewing arthritis statistics we’ve collected, Robin’s main takeaway: “I am happy to know there is information out there, but I’m concerned about the pictures the numbers paint for parents. We and our children need to be hopeful.”
Continue reading JA Mom: “I Know Just Enough to Know I Don’t Know Enough.”
One sultry afternoon in September, Terry Bradshaw was hanging around the horse-training facility on his ranch in Thackerville, Oklahoma, reflecting on turning 70 a few days earlier. “The ride I’ve been on has been an absolute joy,” says Bradshaw. “The good and the bad, all of it.” Continue reading Head to Head With RA
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 Karen Lomas, 65, who works full-time as a nurse. Following, in her own words, is Karen’s story about living with psoriatic arthritis (PsA), which she was diagnosed with several years ago, and how the statistics she reviewed in Arthritis by the Numbers relate to her personally. Continue reading Nurse With Psoriatic Arthritis: “Take Care of Yourself”
Mark Rucker: “Adopt a healthier lifestyle”
When Mark Rucker was diagnosed in 2015 with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) at 44, he had mixed emotions. He was glad to know what had been causing the often unbearable pain in his hands, feet, jaw and toes for the past year. But, he recalls, “I always thought RA was a disease that only affected elderly women, not someone who was in the midst of training for their second Ironman competition.”
A real estate attorney in Lexington, Kentucky, Mark in the past had been a self-described “385-pound couch potato.” Being told in 2011 that he was too big to ride on the rollercoaster with his kids spurred him to change his lifestyle. He traded in sugary sodas for water, cut processed sugar and added fruits and vegetables to his diet, and began to walk a mile each day during his lunch hour. He lost 135 pounds, and those lifestyle changes led him in 2013 to complete his first Ironman – a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and a 26.2-mile marathon.
Continue reading Life Doesn’t Stop with RA: How Three People Keep Doing What They Love