|"Let's Talk RA (rheumatoid arthritis)" Town Hall meeting|
|by Sharon Adams||Tue, Feb 27, 2007, 12:33 pm|
Editors: The speakers are available for interviews. Scroll down for the info.
The Arthritis Foundation today announced that it will host a free “Let’s Talk RA” Town Hall meeting at Dallas’ Cityplace Conference Center, located at 2711 North Haskell, on Monday, March 5 at 7:00 p.m. The open forum will feature John H. Klippel, M.D., national president and CEO of the Arthritis Foundation, and Dallas-based rheumatologist Alex Limanni, M.D. of the Arthritis Centers of Texas. David Winter, M.D., affiliated with Baylor University Medial Center and WFAA-TV medical correspondent, will serve as event moderator. People living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and their caregivers are invited to participate in a discussion about the importance of improved physician-patient communication, disease management and making better lifestyle choices. Attendees will have an opportunity to get answers to their questions about communicating with their physician from these local and national medical experts during the Q&A portion of the meeting.
A survey conducted on behalf of the Arthritis Foundation found that nearly 70 percent of people being treated for RA still experience stiffness, fatigue or pain on a daily basis. [i]
In addition, unlike many other diseases, there is no one specific diagnostic test for rheumatoid arthritis, so clearly describing symptoms to a physician is important for proper care. [ii] The Let’s Talk RA campaign, sponsored by Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, is a national education and awareness campaign designed to improve communication between people who live with RA and their rheumatologists. The campaign also includes a free communication guide.
“Rheumatologists need to have a clear understanding of exactly how rheumatoid arthritis is affecting an individual’s daily activities in order to provide the best possible care. The key to this understanding is effective communication,” said John H. Klippel, M.D., president and CEO of the Arthritis Foundation. Dr. Klippel also is a rheumatologist. “Let’s Talk RA provides people living with rheumatoid arthritis with tools designed to facilitate effective and specific communication about their condition with their doctors.”
To register for “Let’s Talk RA”, please call (214) 826-4361 or visit www.arthritis.org/LTRA/ltra_landing.html.
Let’s Talk RA Communication Guide
The Let’s Talk RA communication guide was designed by the Arthritis Foundation with input from rheumatologists to help those with RA prepare for each doctor visit. The guide offers practical tips, including what information to take notes on and types of questions to ask the doctor. Tips to facilitate the dialogue on treatment plan options and modifiable lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise also are included. The free communication guide is available from the Arthritis Foundation’s Web site, http://www.arthritis.org or by calling 1-800-568-4045.
About Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a, chronic, autoimmune disease characterized by inflammation in the lining of the joints (or synovium), causing joint damage with chronic pain, stiffness and swelling. [iii] RA causes limited range of motion and decreased function as a result of affected joints losing their shape and alignment. 3
RA affects more than 2 million people in the United States and is more common in women, who account for 70 percent of patients diagnosed with RA. 3
About the Arthritis Foundation
The Arthritis Foundation is the leading health organization addressing the needs of some 46 million Americans living with arthritis, the nation’s number-one cause of disability. Founded in 1948, with headquarters in Atlanta, the Arthritis Foundation has 46 chapters and 150 community service points located throughout the country.
The Arthritis Foundation is the largest private, not-for-profit contributor to arthritis research in the world, funding more than $380 million in research grants since 1948. The foundation helps individuals take control of arthritis by providing public health education; pursuing public policy and legislation; and conducting evidence-based programs to improve the quality of life for those living with arthritis. Information is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-800-568-4045 or www.arthritis.org .
1 Ruderman, p. 15, Fig. 2[ii] Rindfleish, JA & Muller, D, pg. 5, para 1, pg.6, para 1
[iii] American College of Rheumatology Web site. Rheumatoid arthritis. http://www.rheumatology.org/public/factsheets/ra_new.asp?aud=pat#3 Accessed November 29, 2006.