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Fighting against juvenile arthritis in July

When: July

What: Children are bursting with energy, constantly on the go. They get bumps and bruises left and right, so pain, swelling and tenderness is not something unexpected. However, chronic swelling and bruising can also be a sign of something more serious. In July, educate yourself on juvenile arthritis during Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month.

Background: Juvenile arthritis, while not well known, is one of the most common childhood diseases in the U.S. It can cause damage to joint cartilage, alter bone growth, and lead to deformity.  It can also cause damage to the eyes, skin and gastrointestinal tract. As common as it is, juvenile arthritis often goes overlooked. In July, take the time to education and increase awareness for this chronic disease.

Story Pitch: There are a number of various groups and organizations that can help to promote their campaigns during Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month. Pediatricians may use this time to promote awareness of the condition, while manufacturers of orthotics will want to promote their product as an option for pain management. Physical therapists may also want to also take the time to increase awareness this month, alerting people of the benefits of movement and physical activity when plagued with juvenile arthritis.

Story Hook: According to the Arthritis Foundation, approximately 294,000 children under 18 are affected by juvenile arthritis and other rheumatologic conditions. Consider the following when making your pitch:

  • Who is typically affected by juvenile arthritis?
  • What are the most common symptoms of the chronic disease?
  • What are some of the most used treatment methods for juvenile arthritis?
  • How is juvenile arthritis diagnosed? Are there any known causes?

Tips: A pediatrician who deals specifically with juvenile arthritis is a good resource to discuss treatment and detection for juvenile arthritis. In addition, a family who is dealing with juvenile arthritis can shed some light on how to cope with juvenile arthritis.

Resources:

American College of Rheumatology
(404) 633-3777
acr(at)rheumatology.org
www.rheumatology.org

Arthritis Foundation
(800) 283-7800
www.arthritis.org

Centers for Disease Control
(770) 488-5464
cdcinfo(at)cdc.gov
www.cdc.gov

Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Center for Childhood Arthritis an Rheumatic Diseases

(215) 590-2547
www.chop.edu/service/rheumatology/home.html

–Researched, compiled & written by Kimberly Cooper
Event Dates  from CHASE’S Calendar of Events

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