July is Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month

When it comes to Arthritis, most people think of grandmas and grandpas having achy pains in their hands and knees. However, over 300,000 American children suffer from Juvenile Arthritis. The term Juvenile Arthritis (JA) includes several autoimmune and inflammatory diseases affecting kids 16 years old and younger.

The Arthritis National Research Foundation is asking people to wear blue during the month of July with a goal of raising awareness and research to find cures of JA.

Juvenile Arthritis is a condition where the child’s immune system attacks the body’s joints. If this disease goes untreated, it could result in death.

Symptoms include swelling, tenderness, and stiffness of joints causing limited range of motion. This condition can cause long term damage to joint cartilage and bone. This leads to joint deformity, impaired use and altered growth of bones and joints.

Research shows no known cause of Juvenile Arthritis. Most treatment plans involve a combination of medication, physical activity, eye care and healthy eating.

Medications used to treat JA can be divided into two groups: those that help relieve pain and inflammation (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, corticosteroids and analgesics) and those that can alter the course of the disease, put it into remission and prevent joint damage, a category known as disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) and a newer subset known as biologic response modifiers (biologics).

Each child responds to his or her treatment plan differently, so there’s no set course of attack for JA.

A4M’s upcoming Gut, Brain and Autoimmune Disorders:  The Role of Food Symposium’s opening lecture will address Autoimmune Disease:  Leaving the Era of Reaction and Entering the New Proactive Era of Prediction.  Additionally, The Fellowship in Anti Aging, Regenerative and Functional medicine offer several presentations that relate to autoimmune and inflammatory diseases conditions and how to diagnose and treat.

For more information on this program or anything A4M offers, please visit http://www.a4m.com/anti-aging-conference-los-angeles-2013-aug.html