May 20th is Behçet’s Disease Awareness Day: Spreading Rare Disease Awareness

May is recognized as Behçet’s Disease Awareness Month and May 20th is recognized as Behçet’s Disease Awareness Day. The focus of these events is to help spread awareness about this rare disease to the general public and in the medical field. For this year’s awareness month, the American Behçet’s Disease Association is hosting the 2020 Virtual Behçet’s Disease Awareness Walk, designed to help spread awareness and raise critical funds for the organization.

About Behçet’s Disease

Behçet’s disease is a rare disorder of inflammation that can have impacts in many different areas of the body. The cause of the disease has yet to be definitively identified, but the disease mechanism is autoimmune in nature, meaning that the damage seen in the disease is the result of the immune system mistakenly attacking healthy tissue. Inflammation appears to originate in the blood vessels. Previous infections may be a risk factor. Symptoms of the illness include painful sores that appear in the mouth, anal, and genital areas, various degrees of eye inflammation, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, fever, bloody cough, and arthritis. The heart and brain may also be affected in some cases. Treatment is mostly symptomatic, and TNF inhibitors and corticosteroids are go-to medications. IVIG and other medications that modulate the immune system may also be tried. Surgery may be used in rare cases. The disease generally resolves with time. To learn more about Behçet’s disease, click here.

The organization also plans to organize other virtual activities related to Behçet’s Disease Awareness Month throughout the rest of the month.

Participating in the virtual walk is simple and requires only three basic steps:

  1. Create a fundraising page by filling in a form with some of your personal information.
  2. Personalize the fundraising page by uploading an image of yourself. Talk about your own personal story about how you got involved in the Behçet’s disease community. Are you a patient? Are you supporting a friend?
  3. Share your fundraiser on social media in order to encourages colleagues, friends, and family to donate to the cause.

So what are you waiting for? Click here to get started.

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