More Inflammatory Arthritis Blogs

Cytokines Within
I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in Feb 2012 (at age 29) after about 3 years of mild symptoms and 1 year of aggressively active disease. I’ve now developed secondary fibromyalgia as well. It has turned my life upside down. Before RA, I was a full-time student majoring in molecular biology, dreaming of a PhD down the road. I hope to still do that some day, but for now I have to take things one day at a time. Some day I’d love to research climate change and possibly help develop new energy/fuel and bioremediation solutions. I love nature and don’t want to see it destroyed.
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Hurt Blogger
When I was 7 years old I got strep throat, mostly I was disappointed because I was wasn’t able to stay in summer camp that week. Then 2 months later I fell off my bike and cracked my skull, the ER thought I had been hit by a car – I did that good of a number on myself. Before I knew it everything went haywire. My neck began growing a nasty red lump that local docs termed “mini mumps” – that’s not even real. They eventually slapped a gown on me and threw me in the hospital, and when the bump wouldn’t leave they cut it out, still perplexed. After about a month of weird symptoms I finally woke up in the middle of the night with my ankles and wrists locked so tight that I couldn’t walk. Reactive arthritis. Rhuematic fever. But this was all debated! My parents and I were called hypochondriacs and told “we didn’t want me to have this disease.” No shit.
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Ra Ra Rad Life
I was diagnosed with RA in May 2012 and since my world has fallen and crashed into a million pieces. I will write as I pick up, rearrange, and create a new masterpiece. If Steve Wynn can stick his elbow through a Picasso and survive I think I can get through this too!
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The Life of a Porcelain Doll
I’m 20 years old and I’m a fourth year student at the University of Toronto. I was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis when I was eleven and fibromyalgia when I was fifteen.
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RAthlete: An Optimist Blogger
With Arthritis we are confronted with many decisions, many obstacles, and many defeats. However, we are also met with challenges, opportunities to rise above, and moments of pure happiness. Accompanied with defeat is our true self, the person forced to show due to adversity. I have found that in the darkest of moments I discover my priorities; I finally understand why I’m doing what I do.
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I keep forgetting I am ill. I forget it for days at a time. I run around at a speed reminiscent of my 30’s. I feel twenty years younger, which is a nice change of pace. I used to feel ancient, ready for death. Not anymore. My illness brings me up short. Literally. It stops me cold and won’t let me forget for long. It is selfish and narcissistic. It likes to be front and center; it doesn’t appreciate being shoved aside. It derives its satisfaction from reminding me of my limitations.
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RA My Way
A diagnosis of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) can be scary. Being diagnosed as a child or at a young age can be downright daunting and terrifying. I saw it as a lifetime sentence of increasing pain and immobility compounded with cocktails of medication.
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Chronic Brevity: Living with Scleroderma
The focus of my blog is going to change a bit and I ask for your patience as I navigate through this new world of “online blogging.” I still intend to spread awareness of these terrible disease(s), keep you posted on my progress and pitfalls and more importantly I hope to now provide a forum where others who suffer from chronic illness can come get support, advice, or just a good laugh cause they know where I’m coming from.
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Rude Awakenings: Life with Rheumatoid Arthritis
My name is Jessica Hawk-Tillman. In January 2010, I was officially diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. At that time, I knew nothing about the disease, or autoimmune illness in general, but that changed quickly.
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More resources and blogs:

Research Study: Have You Overcome Chronic Pain?

Millions of people suffer from chronic pain every day. Some are able to overcome their pain problem; and we are interested in learning from these individuals in order to help others.

This study has been constructed to allow individuals to record their own stories of overcoming chronic pain. These stories will be studied to search for common themes and patterns. It is our hope these stories will help us develop future therapeutic regimens for chronic pain sufferers.

To be eligible to participate in the study, candidates should be at least 21 years old and have overcome a daily pain problem that lasted a year or longer. Interviews typically last from 30 to 60 minutes and can take place in person (Columbia, Missouri) or on the phone.

For more information, visit or call (573) 303-6886.

‘We Can Manage It’: Four Of Brian And Ranell Hanson’s Five Children Have Juvenile Arthritis

GRAFTON, N.D. — The family of Brian and Ranell Hanson is helping the most respected researchers in the nation find a cure for juvenile arthritis.

Four of the couple’s five children have the disease. It is thought that genetics may be a factor in its cause.

Medical records and blood samples from all seven members of the family have been sent by Altru Health System in Grand Forks to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in Ohio for use in ongoing studies.

The family became involved because the children’s pediatric rheumatologist, Dr. Thomas Mason of Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., “was puzzled by (the disease) popping up with all the kids,” said Ranell.

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Nathalie Bennett

Real Profiles of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Photos © Nathalie Bennett


Nathalie Bennett



Toronto, Canada

How long have you lived with RA?

30 years.

What advice would you give to someone who has just been diagnosed with RA?

Well I was diagnosed with JRA at 2 years old, so I’m not really sure what I would say except, this is not a death sentence, you’re just on a different path now. Parents don’t read all the Internet information on medical websites, they will drive you nuts. Talk to real people and other children as their experience will help you gain some perspective, but remember that each person who has RA will have different symptoms, and will require different treatment. Always voice your concerns in the doctors office, and if you don’t like your doctor, you can always look for a better one. My physician who treated me as a child is still in my life, and makes times to see me when I have concerns or good news! Your doctor will become family! Always do what’s right for your child, they will need a lot of love and support. This advice kinda blends over to those who are not children and were diagnosed in there late teens to older adulthood. For these people here, I would say that learning about your own diagnosis is the best thing you can do for yourself, for example in research articles, or other health professionals. I know everything about my RA now, it may take awhile, and remission does happen, so keep positive and take it one day at a time.

Do you use any mobility aids?

No, I do use mobility aids.

How has living with RA helped to improve your life?

Now this question is funny to me because, at first thought I was like ummm RA has ruined my life. My now that I think about it more deeply, I only had 2 years without it and I was an infant. So RA is my life, it has helped me learn a lot about myself and become a stronger woman in life. It’s what drove to me to become a nurse, because I had great nurses who help take care of me growing up, and I wanted to be just like them…and I am lol! It has shown me who my true friends are. When I was kid I got a wish from the WISH foundation to Disney world and it was amazing! It gives me a better perspective on life, meaning I try to live life to the fullest. I say try because sometimes my RA roundhouses my butt, so I remember to take time and relax to roundhouse it right back!

Do you have any visible signs of RA?

Yes I do. In my hands my knuckles are big, I have limited range of motion in my neck, and I walk with a “gangsta” limp!

Can you please describe some of your favorite coping strategies for living with RA?

My favorite emotional coping strategies are spending time with family, my new niece and nephew, my bigger nephew, my friends, my colleagues, and sleeping on my foam mattress!! I love watching comedy movies, laughing always relaxes me afterwards. Listening to music that goes with my mood, dancing, cooking, did I mention sleeping on my foam mattress ahh that is truly heaven! Oh and my Xbox 360, ipad 2, and PS3 also work wonders!

Can you please describe your current medical (traditional and alternative) treatments?

Ok so as I mentioned before I have had RA for 30 years. I have tried so much medications that it’s crazy!! But, during my last biologics drug simponi, I said I am done! My doctor said, you have been on everything except Actemra. I couldn’t believe that after 30 years of this rollercoaster, there was nothing left to try. So, I said fine ill try Actemra. Now, I know that everyone responds differently to medications but Actemra … Oh how I love thee! My CRP and ESR Levels were sky high and now they’re both

Is there anything else about yourself that you would like to share?

I would like to share that, YES. I am 32 and I know I look 16. I don’t use mobility aids because I had my hips replaced when I was 26/27. To open jars I either run them under hot water or tap the edges with a knife and it seems to work. Feel free to ask me questions and I will respond! My email is nursebee2009[at]