Partnering with your healthcare team

Raynaud’s may be more common in women of childbearing age

Findings from a recent study published in the European Journal of Pharmacology may explain why Raynaud’s is more common in women of childbearing age. The study examined the relationship between palm blood flow and estrogen in mice. According to researchers, “estrogen may contribute to the development of Raynaud’s phenomenon in women”.

About estrogen

Estrogen is a one of two main sex hormones that women have. It is responsible for female physical features and reproduction. Estrogen creates the changes common in puberty, such as growth of the breasts, hair in the pubic area and under the arms and the beginning of menstruation. The hormone helps control the menstrual cycle, protect bone health and keep cholesterol in control. Below is a helpful infographic Hormone Health Network to help you understand what estrogen is.

Infographic on estrogen, mentioned in this article about Raynaud's

About Raynaud’s phenomenon Continue reading

Patient experiences of rheumatoid arthritis models of care: An international survey

As part of an international network of RA patient organizations, Arthritis Consumer Experts invites you to participate in a global survey of RA patients to examine the diagnosis, treatment and care they receive for their RA. The goal of this survey is to understand, from the patient experience and perspective, how current “models of care” for rheumatoid arthritis compare between countries.

Global RA Network Survey BannerYour experience and perspective matter

As a person living with RA, sharing your experiences about the care you receive is vitally important. With your help, we can meet the study goals and develop education and information programs to improve patients’ understanding about RA models of care to enable the best treatment outcomes possible in Canada.

How you can participate

If you agree to participate, you will be asked to answer a survey questionnaire, which should take approximately 10 minutes to complete. All the information gathered during the survey will be combined to protect your privacy and anonymity.

To be eligible to participate in this survey, you must:

  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Receive health care in Canada
  • Have access to the internet

Thank you for considering our request to participate in this survey. Your participation will help you and other people living with RA in your country know more about the health care they should be receiving.

Please click here to complete the survey.

#CRArthritis Speaker’s Corner – The road to become a rheumatologist

A screen capture of Cheryl Koehn and future rheumatologist Kelsey ChomistekIn 2008, a rheumatology workforce analysis report published by the American College of Rheumatology Workforce Study Advisory Group concluded:

Based on assessment of supply and demand under current scenarios, the demand for rheumatologists is expected to exceed supply in the coming decades. Strategies for the profession to adapt to this changing health care landscape include increasing the number of fellows each year, utilizing physician assistants and nurse practitioners in greater numbers, and improving practice efficiency.

Fast forward to 2015

The 2015 ACR/ARHP Workforce Study of Rheumatology Specialists in the United States projects a shortage of 3,845 rheumatologists in the U.S. by 2025, an increase from the 2005 ACR Workforce Study, which projected a shortage of 2,576 rheumatologists. Reasons for the shortage include: Continue reading

Cold hands are one of several warning signs of Raynaud’s Phenomenon

Close up of girl wearing mittens - way to prevent Raynaud'sRaynaud’s phenomenon is a condition in which there is an exaggerated blood vessel tightening in response to cold or emotional stress, restricting blood flow to certain areas of the body – most often the fingers, but sometimes the toes, ears, or the end of the nose.

The exaggerated vascular response (tightening) in Raynaud’s phenomenon is called vasospasm, which often occur in response to cold or emotional stress. With vasospasm, the fingers turn white and cold then blue with dilated veins followed by relaxation of the vessel and normal blood flow causing a red ‘flushing’

According to a recent article published in The New England Journal of Medicine, Raynaud’s affects approximately 3 to 5 percent of the population – women are more often affected than men. Raynaud’s phenomenon occurs in two forms – primary and secondary. Primary is the most common and has no underlying cause. Secondary is when Raynaud’s phenomenon occurs in combination with another autoimmune disease like scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome or systemic lupus erythematous. The article also states that people who work with certain chemicals, like vinyl chloride, or vibrating tools like a jackhammer are also susceptible to secondary Raynaud’s. Continue reading

Employment and Arthritis: Making it Work

Making it Work LogoArthritis Research Canada would like to evaluate the effectiveness of Employment and Arthritis: Making it Work – an online eLearning program designed to help people with inflammatory arthritis stay employed. To do so, they are looking for participants to join a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the aforementioned program.

You are eligible if you meet the following requirements: Continue reading

Digital Health Technologies: Improving outcomes in paediatric chronic pain

Child and adult Hand HoldingThe Canadian Institute for the Relief of Pain and Disability (CIRPD) regularly hosts free webinars. The next one, conducted in partnership with Pain BC and the Canadian Pain Coalition, will be on Wednesday, December 9 at 9:30 am PST (12:30 pm EST). The Digital Health Technologies: Improving Outcomes in Paediatric Chronic Pain webinar will look at how the use of digital health technologies has facilitated access to appropriate and timely care.  Continue reading