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Arthritis Foundation Northeastern New York Chapter

Posted on: 2013 10 04

Arthritis Foundation Northeastern New York Chapter The Arthritis Foundation, Northeastern New York Chapter is located in Clifton Park, NY and covers 14 counties in Northeastern New York including: Albany, Columbia, Delaware, Fulton, Greene, Hamilton, Montgomery, Otsego, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Warren and Washington. Arthritis is an umbrella term used for a group of more than 100 medical conditions. The common thread among these 100 plus conditions is that they all affect the musculoskeletal system and specifically the joints which is where two bones meet. Many forms of Arthritis are classified as systemic, meaning they can affect the whole body. The Arthritis can cause damage to virtually any bodily organ or system (heart, lungs, kidneys, etc.). The most common forms of Arthritis are Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis. Other forms which may be familiar to you include: Gout, Fibromyalgia, Scleroderma, Lupus, and Lyme Disease. Osteoarthritis, the most common form of Arthritis and affecting over 22 million Americans, occurs when the cartilage that covers the ends of bones in the joint deteriorates which causes pain and loss of movement as bone begins to rub against the bone. Rheumatoid Arthritis affects over 2 million Americans and is more common in woman. Rheumatoid Arthritis, also referred to as RA, is an autoimmune disease that affects the lining of the joints. The joint becomes inflamed as part of the body’s immune system activity. It is common in RA to have internal organs affected. Common signs and symptoms of Arthritis include: • Joint pain or swelling • Early morning stiffness • Difficulty moving a joint • Skin around the joint is red and warm to the touch Some surprising facts: • 50 million Americans have a doctor-diagnosis of Arthritis • 1 in 5 people in New York State have a form of Arthritis • 300,000 children in the U.S. have a form of Arthritis including an estimated 3,000 children here in the Capital Region • Half of those diagnosed with Arthritis are under the age of 65 • Arthritis is the leading cause of disability in the U.S. causing the economy more than $128 billion a year in medical care and indirect expenses (lost wages) • Arthritis affects more women than men For more information on programs and events, please call Sonya K. Andrew, Program Director at 518-456-1203 or by email at sandrew@arthritis.org. Sonya has been with the Arthritis Foundation since 2003, first as the Admin/Program Assistant and then as the Program Director. Being diagnosed at 13 with Raynaud’s Phenomenon, a form of arthritis, and her mother being diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis and Osteoarthritis, has made her position at the Arthritis Foundation something that hits very close to home. Responsibilities include: educational programming, exercise and Tai Chi programming, Lunch & Learns, Juvenile Arthritis group educational and recreational activities, Advocacy and manager of our social media and soon to be chapter website.

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