Why is the RPF important?

The RPF is the first and only organization with the sole purpose of benefitting people with RA. We endeavor to clearly represent the needs of RA patients and to advance their cause.

Organizations have existed over the years for other rheumatological conditions (such as Sjogren’s syndrome and Fibromyalgia syndrome) and other autoimmune arthritis-type diseases (such as Lupus and Ankylosing Spondylitis). However, the RPF is the first and the only non-profit organization just for RA patients.

For more background reasons, read our About RPF page or this blog post.

What is Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)?

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) or Rheumatoid Disease (RD) is a systemic, progressive, destructive inflammatory disease which attacks organs and joints. RA can affect men or women of any age or background, but women are affected more frequently. The cause or cure is not known.

Read more about RA on the Rheumatoid Arthritis Questions tab.

How many people are affected by Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)?

Prevalence of Rheumatoid Arthritis is usually estimated at one to two percent of the total population worldwide. In 2011, Mayo Clinic estimated that the lifetime risk of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is 3.6% or 1 in 28 for women and 1.7% or 1 in 59 for men.

Mayo Clinic biostatistician Cynthia Crowson explained why the new numbers are important when comparing RA with other diagnoses: "Prevalence and incidence rates (for RA) existed, but prevalence figures underestimate individual risk and incidence rates express only a yearly estimate." (1)

Another difficulty with establishing RA statistics is variations in RA classification criteria. Furthermore diagnosis may vary geographically since early diagnosis is promoted in some countries in order to advance research while in other healthcare systems, diagnosis is made more strictly in order to control costs.

How can I help the RPF?

List us as a resource link on your website,  blog, or printed resource.

Make a donation – click here.

Please visit the Contribute page to learn more ways

Is my donation tax deductable?

All donations to RPF are tax deductable since RPF is a non-profit tax organization according to US 501(c)(3) regulations.

Why do you use the word “Rheumatoid Arthritis” if patients are lobbying to change the name?

People who are searching for help or information about RA will most likely use the words “Rheumatoid Arthritis.” Search engines such as Google help people to find what they search for. In the future, users can gradually change the way search engines define the term by searching with different words.

Can I copy text or images from this website?

No, that is a violation of U.S. federal copyright laws. All of the material on this site is copyrighted. Please be sure to quote this site accurately and carefully link to the page that is quoted.

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The Rheumatoid Patient Foundation is a volunteer-run non-profit organization. We rely on people like you to accomplish our goals and mission. Find out how you can help!