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The Importance of Early RA Diagnosis

February 22, 2019 in Advocacy, Education, Important

By Kelly O'Neill Young, RPF Founder & President

I’ve been a passionate advocate of early RA diagnosis for over a decade. One of the first articles I wrote for a medical website urged doctors to diagnose rheumatoid arthritis (RA) / rheumatoid disease (RD) earlier by looking outside of the proverbial box of arthritis in the hands. Why was I so convinced about the importance of early RA diagnosis?

As we mark the 7th Rheumatoid Awareness Day, February 2, it’s important to remember why early diagnosis is key to the mission of RPF—improving the lives of  (PRD) living with RD. That’s why RPF is excited to partner with imaware™, a new at-home test for RA.

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Biomarkers in Rheumatoid Disease

February 20, 2019 in Awareness, Education

By Kathryne Marks

Why are biomarkers important?

Looking for certain markers in a blood sample is a method that is helpful in the diagnosis many conditions, including Rheumatoid Disease (RD) and other autoimmune diseases. These biological markers—biomarkers— are increasingly helpful as we work to get to earlier and earlier diagnoses in order to hopefully get people treatment sooner—even before obvious symptoms—to improve outcomes.

There are a few different markers to know about, the most important of which are antibodies. Antibodies are produced by B cells, one of the most important types of cells of the adaptive immune system. Each B cell produces antibodies that are specific for, or capable of binding to, a particular other molecule. You don’t need to be an immunologist to understand why it is essential to identify these antibodies.

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