Bienvenue au réseau de diffusion sur l'arthrite Arthritis Research Centre of Canada Arthritis Consumer Experts

A #CRArthritis interview with Laura Nimmon – Social science in rheumatology

We had the privilege of chatting with Social Scientist Dr. Laura Nimmon at the Canadian Rheumatology Association (CRA) Annual Scientific Meeting and Arthritis Health Professions Association (AHPA) last month. Laura is an assistant professor in the Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, as well as a scientist at the Centre for Health Education Scholarship at the University of British Columbia. Laura shared her time with #CRArthritis and sat down with us to answer some questions we had. As patients, we find her research meaningful, and we think you will too! Below are some highlights of the in person interview.

What is a social scientist and what do they do?

Social science is a broad field but can generally be categorized by the study of human society and social relationships. Social scientists aim to understand how our society works and will often use the information they gather to create or promote change within the society.

As a social scientist, how did you become involved in rheumatology?

I entered into the field of rheumatology by being awarded The Arthritis Society Young Investigator Salary Award, which gave me an opportunity to do research in the area. My focus is on teamwork. I look at how healthcare teams coordinate patient centred care and some of the tensions and social dynamics that exist in these interactions. I am conducting this research alongside an incredible team of colleagues consisting of health professionals and patient partners; it is a wonderful combination of minds with different experiences and backgrounds.

Could you share with us the key messages from your presentation at the conference?

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Les entrevues vidéo de l’événement en direct #CRArthritis 2018 sur Facebook et Twitter sont maintenant disponibles sur Facebook et YouTube !

#CRArthritis 2018 channel cover pictureL’événement #CRArthritis en direct sur Facebook et Twitter réalisé par le Réseau de diffusion sur l’arthrite a permis de joindre plus de 94 205 personnes jusqu’à présent ! Merci à tous nos fans et abonnés !

Nous avons réussi ! L’événement en direct #CRArthritis sur Facebook et Twitter a été réalisé par le Réseau de diffusion sur l’arthrite (RDA) dans le cadre de la rencontre scientifique annuelle de la Société canadienne de rhumatologie et de l’Association des professionnels de la santé pour l’arthrite. À cette occasion, le Réseau a réalisé un total de 39 entrevues (7 de plus que l’an dernier) en un peu moins de 48 heures. Un grand merci à tous nos intervieweurs, interviewés et internautes qui ont participé à l’événement. Grâce à vous, l’événement #CRArthritis a pu informer et sensibiliser plus de 94 205 personnes jusqu’à présent. Nous qualifions l’expérience de grand succès et vous avez joué un rôle essentiel dans cette réussite – merci !

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Interviews from the 2018 #CRArthritis Facebook and Twitter Live event are now available on Facebook and YouTube!

Thanks to our fans and followers, Arthritis Broadcast Network’s 2018 #CRArthritis Facebook and Twitter Live event reached over 94,205 people to date! 

We did it! The Arthritis Broadcast Network (ABN) #CRArthritis Facebook and Twitter Live event at the Canadian Rheumatology Association (CRA) Annual Scientific Meeting and Arthritis Health Professions Association (AHPA) Annual Meeting conducted a total of 39 interviews (7 more than last year) in a little over 48 hours. Thank you to all of our interviewers, interviewees, and online audience who participated in the event. Because of you, the #CRArthritis event have informed and educated over 94,205 people to date. We’d say that’s an unqualified success, and you were a central part of making it happen – thank you!


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Study participants needed to evaluate an online pain self-management program

The University of Regina is looking for participants to evaluate an online pain self-management program, completed with Do-It-Yourself Guides, Stories and Additional Resources. 

The University of Regina is seeking seniors to enroll in a research study to evaluate a pain self-management program for older adults( This program is only offered in English.

Picture of a computer for online programThe research study is led by Thomas Hadjistavropoulos, Ph.D., Professor and Research Chair in Aging and Health, University of Regina. The purpose of this study is to explore the acceptability and effectiveness of a remotely-delivered chronic pain management program tailored to older adults, the Pain Course, when delivered in both online and printed (workbook) formats.

This program requires a 3-month commitment, as participants will have 2 months to work through the course material with a 4-week follow-up period.

Recruitment will take place across Canada and participants will be eligible for the study if they:

  1. are a resident of Canada
  2. are 65 years of age or older
  3. have experienced pain for more than three months
  4. do not have severe depression or anxiety
  5. have regular access to a computer and the internet

Potential participants will be required to complete a preliminary screening and telephone assessment. If participants meet the inclusion criteria, they will be required to complete questionnaires at pre-treatment, post-treatment and 4-week follow-up.

The course includes 5 Core Lessons over a 2-month period, along with Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Guides, Stories and Additional Resources that will be available throughout this period.

If you are interested in joining the chronic pain self-management program for older adults, please follow the link below to complete the preliminary screening:

The deadline for potential participants to sign up is Wednesday, April 4th. If you want to learn more about the study, please email Ainsley, the primary researcher, at

“The 1 Minute Symptoms Survey”

Take this survey to help Arthritis Research Canada advance research into symptoms.

picture with the words "Just One Minute"A group of researchers from the University of British Columbia and other Canadian universities are developing a new survey to learn more about a wide range of symptoms that people have (for example, back pain, headache, fatigue, joint pain, anxiety, constipation, etc.). To inform the planned study, we would like to know the opinions of people like you whether this research is important and whether the findings may be valuable.

February 21-23: Join us for our #CRArthritis Facebook and Twitter Live event!

#CRArthritis Facebook and Twitter Live BannerWant to know what Canada’s leading rheumatologists are thinking? Join us for our #CRArthritis Facebook and Twitter Live event! 

Arthritis Consumer Experts hosts the #CRArthritis Facebook and Twitter Live event

Powered by ACE and supported by representatives from the Arthritis Patient Advisory Board of Arthritis Research Canada and the Canadian Spondylitis Association, Arthritis Broadcast Network (ABN) will be interviewing keynote speakers, meeting attendees, patients living with arthritis, and disease experts. We invite you to participate in the Facebook and Twitter Live event. Like, share and retweet the live interviews, send us your comments or questions through Facebook and Twitter during the interviews.

Join the conversation at the Arthritis Broadcast Network Facebook page or Twitter (@ArthritisNetwrk) feed using #CRArthritis. Interviews will take place from Wednesday, February 21st until Friday, February 23rd.

Discussion topics include:

  • Latest advances in the treatment and care of rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, osteoarthritis and much more;
  • Personalized medicine and arthritis;
  • Discussions with leading physiotherapists and occupational therapists;
  • Use of social media in arthritis patient care and medical research;
  • Getting to know your arthritis consumer-patient community;
  • And much more!

Email your questions in advance to or ask them “live” during the event – we look forward to your participation!

Demande de rétroaction de patients sur l’ixekizumab (Taltz) dans le traitement de l’arthrite psoriasique

Stick man holding megaphoneSouffrez-vous d’arthrite psoriasique ? Vos commentaires seraient précieux.

Le programme commun d’évaluation des médicaments (PCEM) invite actuellement les patients et leurs fournisseurs de soins à faire parvenir aux organismes représentant les patients leurs suggestions et commentaires sur la présentation par le fabricant de l’ixekizumab (Taltz) dans le traitement de l’arthrite psoriasique.

Le PCEM fait partie de l’Agence canadienne des médicaments et des technologies de la santé. Le PCEM examine avec objectivité et rigueur l’efficacité et la rentabilité des médicaments et fournit des recommandations aux régimes d’assurance-médicaments publics du Canada (à l’exception du Québec) quant à leur inscription sur la liste des médicaments assurés.

Afin de l’aider dans son processus de recommandation, le PCEM accepte la rétroaction de groupe de patients comme le comité ACE (Arthritis Consumer Experts). Parce que la rétroaction de patients est essentielle à la prise de décision du gouvernement sur les médicaments, nous désirons recueillir vos commentaires pour communication au PCEM.

Voici l’information que recherche le PCEM dans ce dossier particulier : Continue reading

Call for patient input on ixekizumab (Taltz) for the treatment of psoriatic arthritis

Stickman with megaphone calling for patient inputDo you have psoriatic arthritis? We need your valuable input.

The Common Drug Review (CDR) is currently welcoming patients and their caregivers to provide input to patient organizations on the manufacturer’s submission for ixekizumab (Taltz) for the treatment of psoriatic arthritis.

The CDR is part of the Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH). The CDR conducts objective, rigorous reviews of the clinical and cost effectiveness of drugs, and provides formulary listing recommendations to the publicly funded drug plans in Canada (except Quebec).

To help them make their recommendations, the CDR accepts input from patient organizations and groups, like Arthritis Consumer Experts (ACE). Because patient input is vitally important to government decision-making about medications, we would like to gather your views and share them with the CDR.

These are the questions they are asking: Continue reading

Making Valentine’s Day special for someone living with arthritis

Valentines Day image

Research has shown that people in relationships in which they feel positive, connected, and comfortable sharing feelings may experience a reduction in their physical disability and pain, and fewer symptoms of depression and anxiety. Do you know how to make Valentine’s Day special for someone living with arthritis?

Below are some ways to impress your sweetheart:

  1. Take the time to learn your partner’s disease. Learning about your partner’s disease will show that you care, understand and want to share their struggles and celebrate their accomplishments with them. You will also reduce the feelings of stress and frustration that sometimes come with explaining one’s arthritis to a friend or loved one.
  2. Pace your Valentine’s Day activities. Pace yourself to conserve your energy. Look at what you can realistically do and ask your partner for their feedback on your Valentine’s Day plan(s). You will both feel more relaxed and controlled.
  3. Ask others to help. Put certain tasks on hold or delegate others to complete the tasks for you while you take the night off with your loved one. If you have children or pets, ask a relative or friend if they can look after them for you.
  4. Avoid long commute. There are health risks associated with activities that require you to be in the same position for long periods of time, such as getting stiff or swollen joints. If you must commute a long way, ensure the car seat is comfortable and to take short standing breaks every 15 minutes or so.
  5. Avoid smoking and limit the amount of alcohol you drink before anticipated sexual activity. Both reduce sexual functioning. Furthermore, some of the medicines your doctor prescribes to relieve sore joints don’t mix well with alcohol – including nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve), which carry a greater risk for stomach bleeding and ulcers when you drink. Taken with acetaminophen, methotrexate or leflunomide, alcohol can make you more susceptible to liver damage.
  6. Start the night with a warm shower or bubble bath to warm up the joints, to help with sore muscles, and to relax.
  7. Talk to your partner about what you like and don’t like, what hurts and what doesn’t hurt. You may find the honesty will enhance your relationship, and you will likely be more comfortable during sexual activity because of communicating what works for you. If you are finding these conversations difficult, you may benefit from seeing a sex therapist.
  8. Incorporate sexual activity and physical contact (like hugging) into your Valentine’s Day activities. Both can improve bonds between people and help build trust, reduce pain, promote sleep, reduce stress, boost immunity, burn calories, improve self-esteem, and improve heart health.

If you have any other ideas, please leave us a comment on Facebook or Twitter. On behalf of the team at Arthritis Broadcast Network, I hope you will have a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

Let BC PharmaCare hear “Your Voice” on tocilizumab (Actemra™) 

Stick Man figure holding MegaphoneBC PharmaCare is looking for your input on tocilizumab (Actemra™) for the treatment of giant cell arteritis

Tocilizumab (Actemra®) for giant cell arteritis (GCA) is now being considered for coverage under the British Columbia Ministry of Health’s PharmaCare program. By filling out a questionnaire on a website called Your Voice, you can provide feedback about tocilizumab for the treatment of GCA.

You can give input if you are a B.C. resident and have giant cell arteritis, a caregiver to someone with giant cell arteritis, or if your group represents people who live with giant cell arteritis.

If you would like our help in providing your input, you can email us your input at or call us at 604-974-1366. We can send it as a patient organization on your behalf. Please provide your input to us by Monday, February 19 so that we may submit the questionnaire in time for the deadline.

The submission deadline is midnight on February 21, 2018. Patients and caregivers may give their input directly through the links below.

Please click here to let BC PharmaCare hear Your Voice. Or, go to the following links:

  • To view the information sheet for tocilizumab for giant cell arteritis: click here
  • For the Patient Questionnaire: click here
  • For the Caregiver Questionnaire: click here
  • For the Patient Group Questionnaire: click here (Patient groups are required to register their name with the Ministry of Health before making their submission.)