What’s the 2014 Arthritis Forecast? – by Ashley Boynes-Shuck

2013 was a great year with many arthritis-related accomplishments and medical advances. But, 2014 stands to prosper just as well. Instead of looking back with a usual “best of” or “top 10” list in regards to the year that has passed, let us welcome in 2014 by looking forward, and seeing what the future could hold for patients with arthritis and rheumatic disease as 2014 continues to get underway.

Just about a month in to the new year, we’ve already learned a lot and have gotten some interesting arthritis-related news — some good, some bad, but all worth mentioning.

Here are some tidbits and articles to check out, as we continue our journey into 2014:

  • It was reported that singer and actress Selena Gomez may have been diagnosed with Lupus (SLE,) prompting her to cancel the remainder of her world tour.
  • USA Today did an article on pain-reduction techniques for arthritis.
  • The New Scientist reported that a virus may be to blame for an arthritis outbreak in mice.
  • More research has been done on the use of stem cells as an arthritis treatment.
  • The FDA asked doctors to limit the use of acetaminophen with arthritis and chronic pain patients.
  • WebMD reported that breast-feeding may reduce mothers’ odds of rheumatoid arthritis after nursing.
  • A new study showed that depression was significantly higher than previously thought amongst RA patients.
  • In “weird and wacky” news, it was found that some Africans rub condoms on their knees to diminish arthritis pain.
  • It was found that arthritis is on the rise in the UAE (United Arab Emirates.) So far, there’s no word on what this rise could be attributed to, precisely.
  • Many bloggers and books claim that a vegan or vegetarian diet can ease the pain of, or reduce the risk of, arthritis. Gluten-free, paleo, and Mediterranean diets have also been touted. Even the Arthritis Foundation and Arthritis Today Magazine have supported the notions of healthy diets and anti-inflammatory foods.
  • As always, many new drugs are in the clinical trial stages, AND a lot of research is still continually being done. This could be very promising for sufferers of rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, lupus, sjogrens, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, and other rheumatic diseases. You can always stay abreast of the latest research by visiting the Arthritis Foundation’s website.
  • A webinar for parents and caregivers of children with Juvenile Arthritis has been announced. It will take place February 11th. Learn more, here.
  • Great events in the works! The Arthritis Foundation Advocacy Summit has been announced, and will take place March 24-26, 2014 in Washington, DC. Learn more, here.

The forecast for 2014 looks bright, when it comes to arthritis. While there will always be bad news out there in the world today, it’s nice to be able to take comfort in the fact that there is a lot of hope to be found, too.

Be Well,

Ashley Boynes-Shuck


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