Read more: Piriya Mahendra, medwireNews, December 2012
Singer-songwriter, Toni Braxton was recently hospitalized with health problems, including blood clots, related to lupus. She was diagnosed at the age of 15 with the autoimmune disease. Her lupus has affected her career, causing her to have to declare bankruptcy twice.
Lupus affects about 15,000 Canadians or about 1 in 200. It is known to run in families. Recent studies show that the brother or sister of a person with lupus is 25 times more likely to develop the disease than someone in the general population. Toni Braxton’s uncle had lupus. He passed away from complications of the disease. Braxton’s brother also lives with the illness. However, having a genetic predisposition for the disease, fortunately, doesn’t guarantee you’ll develop it.
Read more: Examiner, Samantha Chang, December 2012
Also in this article: Lady Gaga, another celebrity singer, announced two years ago that she has family members with lupus, and said that test results indicated she was “borderline positive” for the disease.
The daughter of Houston Rockets coach, Keven McHale, died last month from complications of lupus. Alexandra “Sasha” McHale was diagnosed with the autoimmune disease last year. She was recently hospitalized, but her health continued to decline for two weeks until her death.
She was only 23 years old.
Video: Sasha McHale Essay, NBA.com
The rarest diseases can be the costliest to individuals, society and to the economy. Dr. Antonia Aviña-Zubieta, a rheumatologist with the Arthritis Research Centre of Canada (ARC), discusses the costs of the rarer forms of autoimmune arthritis, including lupus.
Rheumatologist Dr. Aviña-Zubieta tells ABN why it is challenging to diagnose lupus early enough to change the outcomes of the disease.
Do you live with systemic lupus erythematosus? Do you care for someone, or does your organization represent people, with this medical condition? You can provide feedback to British Columbia’s Ministry of Health about belimumab (Benlysta®), for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), via a website called Your Voice.
Through this website, patients, caregivers, and patient groups can add their voices to the BC PharmaCare drug review process by filling out an online questionnaire.
The input is reviewed by the Drug Benefit Council, which then gives recommendations on whether a medication should be covered, and how, by BC PharmaCare. BC PharmaCare then makes a decision based on those recommendations and available resources. Policies and plans already in place also factor in the decision making process.
It is an opportunity for you to share your perspectives on medication decisions that affect you.
Please click here to let BC PharmaCare hear Your Voice. Or, go to the following links:
- To view the information sheet for belimumab: 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.)
The submission deadline is midnight on Wednesday, June 13, 2012.