Monday, March 1, 2010

Rheumatoid Arthritis Help


Right now I'm going to talk about Rheumatoid Arthritis.  This is a subject that is important to me for a couple of reasons.  1)  It runs in my family and my husband's family; 2) My mother-in-law passed away from it.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a long-term disease that leads to inflammation of the joints and surrounding tissues. It can also affect other organs.

The cause of RA is unknown. It is considered an autoimmune disease. The body's immune system normally fights off foreign substances, like viruses. But in an autoimmune disease, the immune system confuses healthy tissue for foreign substances. As a result, the body attacks itself.  RA can occur at any age. Women are affected more often than men.

RA usually affects joints on both sides of the body equally. Wrists, fingers, knees, feet, and ankles are the most commonly affected. The course and the severity of the illness can vary considerably. Infection, genes, and hormones may contribute to the disease.

As you can see, it's not a pleasant disease to have and because of the history in the family it's one I pay attention to and watch the medical world news on it as well.  Quite frankly, I expect to have it and I am not looking forward to it.  However, there is a fairly new medication that seems to have great promise.  It's called Orencia

Orencia (Abatacept) is a man-made protein that prevents your body's immune system from attacking healthy tissues and that's exactly what Rheumatoid Arthritis does.  This medication has come on strong and seems to be doing wonders for people suffering from moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. 

One of the major downfalls from most medications that treat Rheumatoid Arthritis is that they take your immune system to that of an aids patient.  That's exactly what happend to my mother-in-law.  Because of this, she ended up catching a common viral infection which turned into ARDS (Adult Respitory Distress Syndrom) and lost her life to it.  I believe that if this medication had been out there when she was alive, she wouldn't have caught the virus and we'd still have her with us today.

If you have rheumatoid arthritis or know someone who does then I strongly encourage you to give them this information or check into it yourself. 

You can find more information here.







This post is part of the Becentsable Gathering
Compensated Affiliate

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