May is Vasculitis Awareness Month: Spreading Rare Disease Awareness

According to a story from ANCA Vasculitis News, the month of May is recognized as Vasculitis Awareness Month, a time for spreading awareness about vasculitis among the general public and in the medical field. This year, the Vasculitis Foundation has pulled out all the stops to help people get involved in this year’s event. Check out this video to learn more about the organization.

About Vasculitis

Vasculitis is a group of inflammatory disorders in which blood vessels are destroyed. Both arteries and veins can be affected. The cause can vary and is not always well understood in some cases. It can be caused by an infection and some cases appear to have a genetic component. It is regarded as an autoimmune disease, but the exact process that triggers an immune response is unknown. Symptoms include weight loss, fever, kidney disease, bloody stool, abdominal pain, skin conditions such as purpura, arthritis, vision loss, headache, stroke, high blood pressure, bloody cough, gangrene, and nose bleeds. This disease can cause significant system-wide effects that require prompt treatment. This treatment usually involves immunosuppressive drugs such as steroids in order to bring down inflammation. To learn more about vasculitis, click here.

Get Involved

There are plenty of activities and resources for this year’s event, such as social media graphics (don’t forget to use the hashtag #VAM2021), support group meetings, the foundation’s podcast, studies for patients to get involved in, surveys, and other educational resources. Click here to learn more.

In addition, the Vasculitis Foundation had produced a video each year for Vasculitis Awareness Month, which has been compiled into a collection that can be found here. The organization is also drawing attention to its Vasculitis Patient-Powered Research Network. Click here to learn more about it. There are also several projects that people can get involved in such as:

  1. Victory Over Vasculitis: Patient advocate Brandon Hudgins is aiming to raise $10,000 for the organization through this campaign. Click here to learn how you can play a part.
  2. Patient Heroes: This project seeks to highlight triumphant stories in the patient community. The stories of ten different patient stories will be told using trading cards and videos. Click here to learn more.
  3. Pineapple Project: Participants wear clothing or create artwork that is meant to represent breakthroughs in their lives along with educational facts/tips. Check it out here.

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