JULY IS JUVENILE ARTHRITIS AWARENESS MONTH
Nearly 300,000 Children Nationwide Have Been Diagnosed
When you hear about arthritis do you think about children? If you’re like many people in the United States, you probably are unaware that arthritis affects more children than juvenile diabetes and cystic fibrosis combined.
Juvenile arthritis is one of the most common chronic illnesses affecting children yet it is often undetected or misdiagnosed when symptoms first appear. During July – Juvenile Arthritis (JA) Awareness Month – the Arthritis Foundation is focusing on increasing awareness of early signs and symptoms of juvenile arthritis and resources for families affected by the disease.
Joint pain, stiffness and swelling around a joint may be early signs of a serious inflammatory rheumatic disease. Early medical treatment of JA can prevent serious, permanent damage to a child’s joints. There is no known cure however advances in research have produced new treatments that moderate and even stop the effects of juvenile arthritis, preventing significant disability in later years.
Learn more about JA at www.arthritis.org/juvenile-arthritis.php. View the spring 2013 Northeastern Ohio JA e-newsletter at
http://www.arthritis.org/ohio/2013-spring-ja-enews/ Visit www.arthritis.org/neo.php to read a local family’s blog posts following the Arthritis Foundation’s national JA Conference July 18-20, 2013 in Anaheim, California.
Speak out for children diagnosed with arthritis by becoming an Arthritis Advocate at www.arthritis.org/advocacy. Let your elected representatives know that more federal support is needed to train pediatric rheumatologists and more research funding is needed to help children with all forms of juvenile arthritis. Eleven states, including neighboring West Virginia, don’t have a single specialist to treat children with JA.