Tuesday, February 24, 2009

House M.D.

I do enjoy the show although Hugh Laurie's crankiness has gotten a bit grating in the past two seasons. It is interesting how the writers so often refer to lupus as the potential cause of whatever ailments that episodes patient is facing. It makes sense due to the difficulty to diagnose the disease and the myriad of symptoms that are associated with it. I am conflicted though in that while it does bring a criminally underexposed and understood disease some well needed attention, I wonder if it makes lupus seem almost so rare and almost less severe. This is evidenced in the now almost catch phrase "It's not lupus." Google it and you will see t-shirts among other items with this emblazoned on them. While the line itself is clearly in reference to the show, most have a depiction of House's face on them, this phrase has also raised itself in perhaps more disturbing ways. On the ALR YouTube channel www.youtube.com/myalr, I have noticed many postings by people after a very powerful video 'Faces of Lupus" who respond with this catchphrase, often with an exclamation point. These posts are generally taken down, but still what point are the poster's trying to make. Did they even watch the video? Is someone else's suffering cause for a cheap joke? Or is this all really no big deal at all. I am not sure. I would love to know anyone's thoughts...

Monday, February 23, 2009

Great Blog

I came across this blog awhile back and have been following it ever since. Highly informative and really interactive. Check it out here

Green Turtle Event March 10th!

A really cool event I came across on Facebook set up by some very motivated people. Thought I would repost. Good stuuf!

Dear Friends ~

As many of you know, 11 years ago my best friend, Danielle Garceau was diagnosed with Lupus, a life-threatening auto immune disease. Over the last three years we have been working effortlessly to raise money for lupus research. Last year, working in conjunction with the Alliance for Lupus Research and generous donors like yourselves, our teams alone successfully raised over $20,000!

On Tuesday, March 10th, the Greene Turtle in Fells Point has graciously offered to host a Funds for Friends event at their bar/restaurant. They will generously donate 10% of the entire days proceeds to the Alliance for Lupus Research (ALR).

Please spread the word and come to the Greene Turtle on Tuesday, March 10th to support this great cause. There will be great happy hour specials, beer pong and flip cup tables, and small raffle prizes to be given away! Stop in for a drink, stay for dinner and a fun time with friends!

If possible, please let me know by the end of February if you plan on coming - the Greene Turtle wants to be sure they have enough staff on hand to serve us!

We look forward to seeing everyone at the Greene Turtle in Fells Point on Tuesday, March 10th! Please come out and support a GREAT cause!


Katie Rigler


***Recent Developments***

* In March 2008, a scientist discovered an association between a gene located on the X chromosome and the risk of developing lupus.

* In December 2008, GlaxoSmithKline and Dynavax Technologies Corporation announced a worldwide strategic alliance to discover, develop and commercialize novel inhibitors of endosomal Toll-like Receptors (TLRs) for the treatment of immuno-inflammatory diseases. TLRs are key receptors of the innate immune system that can induce strong inflammatory responses. This alliance will target autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, such as lupus.

*** Facts about Lupus ***

* Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease in which a person's immune system mistakenly attacks the body's own tissue.

* Lupus can cause life-threatening damage to major organs such as the kidneys, lungs, heart and central nervous system.

* Right now, the only treatment for Lupus is immunosuppressive drugs.
The current treatments only fight the symptoms and manifestations of lupus, not the cause of the disease itself. Over time, the drugs are toxic and the side effects can be serious.

* Lupus is the leading cause of death among women with autoimmune diseases who are in their childbearing years (ages 15-45).

* Women are five times more likely to die from lupus than men, and African Americans are three times more likely to die from lupus than Caucasians.

* Between 1979 and 1998 there was an approximate 70% increase in lupus deaths among middle-aged African American women


Check out the Alliance for Lupus Research on YouTube at www.youtube.com/myalr
Feel free to comment and link to your own channel.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

2009 Spring ALR Walk with Us to Cure Lupus Walkathon

Put on your walking shoes people! The Spring ALR Walk with Us to Cure Lupus Walkathon season is almost upon us, with many kickoffs already having taken place. Don't miss out. Visit http://walk.lupusresearch.org/site/PageServer for more information. Like my title says, together, we willl find a cure!