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Your Impact

Your Impact

You have an impact in so many ways

Thank you for so much. Here are just a few of the many stories that show your donations in action. Every single day, researchers and healthcare professionals are making progress toward finding the causes of and cures for arthritis and in providing the best possible treatment and care for those living with arthritis today. These stories are all about your contribution. They show the impact you have in helping to create a better life for all Canadians who live with arthritis and in finding a cure.

 

You contribute generously.
You help to change lives today.
You support innovative research and medical breakthroughs.
You make a difference.
You are a hero to so many.
Thank You for all that you do. 

A smartphone app to help children cope with Juvenile Arthritis

Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) is the most common cause of chronic musculoskeletal pain in children and young adults and it can have a significant negative impact on all aspects of the quality of life of those whose suffer from this disease. Typically they face a life that is often defined by pain which can, in many cases, limit a child’s ability to function and can affect many facets of their lives. And it can change in intensity from day to day which makes it even more difficult to manage.
 
Often, medications such as ibuprofen and naproxen don’t help all children with JIA and while powerful new medications called biologics may reduce inflammation and pain for a lot of children, doctors have found that many children continue to have pain even with the use of these strong medicines.
 
If adolescents and young adults can learn to handle pain when they are young, chances are that they will be able to manage their pain better and live with fewer limitations when they are adults. So programs and tools that enable them to thrive while living with and managing their pain are very important.
 
A team lead by researcher Jennifer Stinson, a clinician scientist at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, is working to develop an integrated smartphone app and website for adolescents and young adults who are living with pain caused by a range of chronic conditions including arthritis. The purpose of this research is to develop and evaluate the effectiveness of the first smartphone-based pain coping application which is called ‘iCanCope’ with Pain.
 
This innovative app, which will be provided free to anyone who wants it, will help young patients track pain, sleep, mood, activities and exercise and will also help them to set and meet goals and coordinate their progress and achievements with others just like themselves. This app will also give its users suggestions on how to deal with pain in the moment and on working with healthcare providers. In addition, the accompanying website will provide reliable information about pain and offer valuable, practical suggestions to help young users take charge of managing their pain on their own.
 

Reducing the risks associated with Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is an inflammatory arthritis that affects up to 30% of people with psoriasis, a common, chronic, genetic inflammatory disease. The inflammation in the skin and joints caused by PsA has been linked to an increased risk of developing heart disease or stroke. However, since our knowledge about the underlying pathways linking PsA and heart disease is limited, there is a need to build on what insight we have to identify and treat those at risk of complications caused by Psoriatic Arthritis. 

Dr. Lihi Eder is a rheumatologist with a particular interest in psoriatic disease. She is leading a team of rheumatologists and cardiologists with the aim of improving the management of and care for Canadians living with PsA. Her team will combine vascular imaging, used to assess the health of blood vessels, with blood samples to identify biomarkers (indicators found within our blood) that can be linked to our current health. Their aim is to develop a tool that can predict who is at risk for developing blockages in their arteries and that can lead to earlier diagnosis and more favourable outcomes.
 
This study will be used as a foundation that will fuel future research to better understand the link between PsA and increased risk of heart disease and stroke and, ultimately, to help reduce the level of preventable deaths or disability in those living with Psoriatic Arthritis.

Designing synthetic joints to help treat osteoarthritis

Synovial joints, like the hip or wrist, are generally resistant to a large range of pressure and forces that cause wear and tear. Synovial fluid, which is found within these joints, acts to lubricate and protect the joint, but the nature of its interaction with cartilage and other components of the joint is not well understood. Researchers are working to better understand the complex interactions of synovial fluid and the other components of the joint in order to develop effective treatments for osteoarthritis (OA).
 
Jimmy Faivre, a research scientist at the University of Montreal, is conducting a study that will examine the processes of mechanical joint lubrication. The goal of this project is to design synthetic cartilage and synovial fluid in order to help treat Canadians living with OA. The studies will work to create a library of synthetic options and will be combined with other synovial fluid components to learn when and how they work together to create a good synthetic replacement.
 
Success in creating a new and resistant synthetic synovial fluid could lead to better implants for Canadians who require transplant surgery. In addition, gaining knowledge about the components that make up the lubrication of our joints can help further research to develop better treatments of osteoarthritis and its sometimes devastating impact.

We’re helping Canadians manage and live well with arthritis

We’re all about people helping people. Your generous support helps us provide solutions for so many people and in so many ways. In the past year, nearly 12,000 people attended one of our in-person education programs where they learned how to manage their pain or were introduced to exercise techniques and strategies designed to help them live more active lives and mental health tips and insights that will help them keep their spirits up when arthritis is dragging them down.
 
We are able to do so much to help all Canadians living with arthritis including children. The solutions you help us provide for the youngest arthritis patients include six overnight camps around the country. At these camps, children can feel understood and accepted with a barrier-free environment and activities that let them enjoy life as children and not be defined by their disease. Other childhood solutions we provide also include Family Days, fun and informative events for families living with Juvenile Arthritis and other rheumatic conditions. This is a wonderful opportunity for families from around the province to connect and create relationships so they can share their stories and experiences. And we can’t forget the backpacks that are specially-designed to help make school days that much more comfortable and enjoyable.
 
And with a dynamic program of practical online educational solutions, we extend our reach to all Canadians, including those living in smaller, more remote communities and who may not be able to participate in our in-person programs. Our online education modules include, among so many, Overcome Fatigue , a 7-step process to help reduce fatigue and improve your quality of life and You and Your Healthcare Provider which is designed to help Canadians with arthritis take a more active role in their treatment planning. Last year, over 13,000 people took advantage of our online tools.
 
So many solutions. Why not try one out for yourself? Here is our innovative interactive Symptom Checker. This tool is designed as a resource to help you communicate more effectively with your health care provider about symptoms you may be experiencing.  Simply answer the questions based on your symptoms, then print out the results and take them to your next appointment with your health care provider.