Today is Rheumatoid Awareness Day, and we’re spreading the word about the condition that affects over 9,000 PatientsLikeMe members. Rheumatoid disease can manifest in many different ways – fatigue, joint pain, stiffness and fever, to name a few — so it can be hard to understand the full scope of this condition. To show the world what living with #TheRealRD is like, the Rheumatoid Patient Foundation has shared these seven interesting facts:
1.Rheumatoid disease is not a type of arthritis; arthritis is just one symptom.
Rheumatoid disease (RD) is a systemic disease related to immune function that can affect any part of the body including the heart, lungs, eyes, skin or joints.
2. Available treatments are not adequate for many people with moderate to severe rheumatoid disease.
About 1/3 of patients don’t respond to available biological disease modifying drugs.
3. Rheumatoid disease is different in each person — and even in the same person over time.
Some people experience constant pain, and some have a series of “flares” and periods of lower disease activity. Symptoms can vary greatly from day to day
4. RA research is severely underfunded in the U.S.
RD is funded at about 1/12th the per-patient rate of similar diseases with comparable impact.
5. Rheumatoid disease is often an invisible illness.
Just because someone with RD looks good doesn’t mean he or she feels good.
6. Early, aggressive disease treatment has been shown to provide the best outcomes.
Those whose disease has been treated early have the best chance at achieving remission or low disease activity.
7. Remission is rare. Pain is not.
Remission rates have been reported as low as 6% in the average clinical environment. Most people with RD experience pain every day.
Share this post on Twitter and help spread the word.