By JANE E. ALLEN, ABC News Medical Unit
June 16, 2011
In the summer between high school and college, Angela Lundberg saw a life full of possibilities turn into one of limitations when doctors explained that the pain that had started in her feet and spread to her fingers came from rheumatoid arthritis.
“The only person I knew who had it was my grandma and she got it when she was in her 60s, I think,” the Minneapolis native, now 32, recalled. “The day I was diagnosed, I remember going home from the doctor’s office and crying alone in my room thinking about my grandmother’s ugly twisted fingers and collapsed knuckles. Was that also my fate at age 18?”
Although Lundberg had no idea that the complicated and incurable disease could strike in the prime of life, a surprising number of the 1.3 million Americans with rheumatoid arthritis are young adults from 18 to 40. These are prime years for building careers and having children, when they can hardly afford to have plans disrupted.
Wow, this is the second really informative article that I’ve seen this past week in the main stream media. (Here’s the first.) It’s great to see that the discussion is going beyond the usual simple details, and it’s particularly nice to see emphasis placed on the young age of many people who live with rheumatoid arthritis!