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14 Responses to “Rheumatoid Arthritis Statistics”

    1. Kristi says:

      As I read the point on the Mortality rate, I thought of my Dad who died exactly a year ago this month. He had RA but the death the doctors say was heart failure. He had RA for 20 years-the exact age I am now. It certainly bothers me that I might live only 20 more years and have to suffer with this stuff. My prayers are that even with the low research money that something will be found to stop this awful disease. I also think it is very interesting that the US tops the number of deaths from RA-just wonder if it could our lifestyle-probably.
      Thank you, Kelly, for all the hard work you put into this blog and for keeping us so well informed-You are a Godsend!

    2. Drug Researcher and RA Patient says:


      Oh the woes of funding, research and education/awareness campaigns. An influential factor in what labs research and study is what can they get funding for. A majority of the funding for academic labs and smaller biotechs comes from government sources like the NIH and private sources like charitable foundations and private investors. Capital is made available through advocacy groups and public support. You really need to hit on all three aspects of this to make real change in the research dollars spent on RA research. Perhaps the major arthritis foundations could take some notes from the success of other influential foundations like the Komen foundation in raising the profile of RA in the public’s mind.

      From all my reading on RA blogs and patient stories, it seems like there is a major problem with education on RA and its perception in the minds of the general public. All the posts on insensitivity to the struggles of patients, the perceptions that this is an “old person’s disease”, the confusion between RA and OA, etc. really does our cause a disservice. Perhaps fixing this would be the best place to start to make real change. Blogs like yours help, but we need to think bigger and reach more people.

      • There is a disadvantage to me not knowing who you are or what your goals are. However, if you have read much of this website, it’s clear that that (what you say must be done) is my intention. This site has been created as a platform to approach those fronts.

        We know that the AF is not going to “save” us. It seems to be to their advantage to perpetuate the status quo described in your last paragraph. Why don’t you search them on this site to look at some of the things they have said about RA?

        • Drug Researcher and RA Patient says:

          I’m a recently diagnosed patient with RA and I’m pretty new to all of this. I’m also a scientist that has spent their entire career researching drug targets and pathways looking for treatments for diseases. I found your blog one day and other blogs say that yours is a very good one. So I look at it a few times a week and have posted comments a couple of times. I’ve read a lot of your posts, but I must say that I haven’t studied them intently. So forgive me if I mentioned something you might have already stated. My main goal is control of my disease and to get a better understanding of what is happening to me. I have no ulterior motive other than sharing my opinions and knowledge when I think I can add something to the conversation.

          • There are about 460 pages on this website, so if you’re new, I completely understand you haven’t made it all the way through. I hope we can talk more after you’ve had a look. Also, here’s something you might have a look at to get an idea about how I view our situation (as RA patients). Also, maybe the About pages and like I said, search the AF in my search box. They were the ones, for example, who published the “hypochondriasis” stuff.

            I didn’t mean to sound harsh. I’ve worked more than full time for about a year and a half on this project. I don’t get paid. It costs me. What you see here is only what is above the surface. I feel like I’ve given my life to this project (after raising my sons of course).

      • Drug Researcher and RA Patient says:

        You know when I reread my post I see that I made a mistake with one of my thoughts. What I intended to say about the patient stories and misperceptions by the public was not that these things do a disservice to our cause but that the fact that there are so many of these demonstrates that most people don’t know much about RA and this lack of education for people is he disservice. The stories by patients really help to raise awareness.

        • They do, yes. That is one purpose of the Onset Story project on this site. You will see it stated there – to raise awareness and to inform science as well as to help one another. Thank you for clarifying.

    3. Mary says:

      When I was first diagnosed, 20 + years ago, I looked into the AF. What I found was an organization that spent more money trying to make money than to do research. I’m not sure if that has changed but looking at the magazine…..well. I wish there was somewhere else to donate that would truly look for a cure and an elevation of awareness of this disease. I know some people swear by the AF but I don’t get much from them.

      • Mary, I hear this all the time from people. At first I was afraid to say it out loud, but I’m not sure why. The AF is not going to change how they deal with RA. I have talked to too many people who have tried to deal with that problem. (Please see next comment.)

    4. Hey ya’ll!

      There *are* other places to donate! Here are 2 good ideas: (1) Arthritis Introspective (AI). They train small groups and sponsor them all over the country. And

      (2)This website. I work for full-time here and running the site *costs* me money. Only a tiny handful of people have ever donated to the site – including AI, by the way. O:-)

    5. Thanks to Carol who sends this comment to us via Facebook: “I did a quick search on the NIH site for clinical studies. Worldwide RA has 295 studies — breast cancer has 3,789.” Carol says she used for these stats. Here’s the link. Okay so EIGHT PERCENT as many?

    6. Amy Fowler says:

      These statistics are very eye-opening. Living in an area where medical research is one of the top employers, makes this information even more startling. According to UAB, they know more about RA and how to treat it than Lupus and other autoimmune diseses. That’s why there have been so many new drugs introduced to treat RA over the past few years. Imagine how much further we could we be in finding that medication(s) that puts this disease in remission for everyone!

      • Amy, you’ve known from the beginning you are in a special place at UAB. I remember you telling me that. If I can’t get answers to some RA prob I have in the future, I’m coming there! I have read from researchers that we are further from finding a cure for RA than many of the other things like cancers & aids. Don’t know about Lupus, but I do get the impression that the auto-immune diseases are extremely complex. All the reason to spend more, not less. What if UAB had new grants / scholarships to train a new generation of rheum docs? Just as one example.

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