Gavin was diagnosed with Juvenile Arthritis about 3 years ago at the age of 5. He has suffered through flares but is currently symptom free. He is an active little man that doesn't let the Arthritis or the weekly injections get to him. We hope to one day have a pain free little guy who does not require regular medication....watching him run around, or play hockey, you'd never know (which is a good thing).
We want to draw attention to Rheumatoid Arthritis and how this disease affects young children. It is very different from Osteo-Arthritis that is more common and typically affects those that have many years of life experience:) Rheumatoid Arthritis is an auto immune disease that causes inflammation around the joints, eyes, skin and even internal organs. The only current treatment for Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis are immuno-suppressant drugs that combat the immune system to reduce inflammation. There is no cure. These drugs are the same ones used for chemo therapy in cancer patients. As we all know, the side effects of these drugs can be difficult to manage. Gavin gets a weekly chemo therapy shot at home, which also requires he take a strong anti-nausea medication (same as used on Cancer patients). The medicine is currently keeping Gavin symptom free so that he can enjoy an active life. Fingers crossed that we do not see any more flares.
Our hope is that in Gavin's lifetime they will discover a cure, and not just treatments.
There is no cure for arthritis – a painful and devastating disease - that is why I am participating in the Walk for Arthritis.
Today, more than 6 million Canadians are affected by arthritis. These numbers are only going to increase. By 2035, 1 in 4 Canadians will have arthritis. That means you or your wife, your mother or your brother just may have arthritis.
As the prevalence of arthritis increases, so does the demand for investment into cutting-edge research, proactive advocacy and innovative information and support that will deliver better health outcomes for people affected by arthritis.
This year the Walk for Arthritis is celebrating its 10th year - help make this the best year ever by joining the Walk for Arthritis community and supporting this important cause!
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