At age 20, Janeen experienced her first time-out from life due to complications from rheumatoid arthritis. Since then, she has tried nearly all arthritis drugs and had both her hips and knees replaced.
At 6 years old, Janeen Tuitupou was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA). At that time, treatment mainly consisted of aspirin and staying off joints, so she was put on crutches, which she promptly dropped on the ground whenever she wanted to run off with her friends.
Periods of remission and milder years of the disease allowed Janeen to complete her education, including a master’s degree from Stanford University. She started two businesses and travel the world, but it hasn’t always been easy. During her junior year at Northwestern University, pain in her left hip became so severe that her family had to evacuate her from college. They brought her home to wait more than a year for her first hip replacement. At age 20, Janeen experienced her first of many time outs from life due to arthritis and its complications. Since then, she has tried nearly all arthritis drugs and had both hips and knees replaced, some of them multiple times.
For Janeen, there has never been anywhere to go but forward, and she’s continually engineering changes that ease living with arthritis. She and her husband moved from the Bay Area to Pacific Grove two years ago to relax into semi-retirement and improve their quality of life. Now when the going gets tough, they go to the ocean to revitalize and soak in the beauty of the central coast.