Although over 50 million Americans have at least one autoimmune disease, the public does not understand that these diseases have the same cause and that they run in families. A major problem and cost factor of these diseases is the fact that they are misdiagnosed or not diagnosed early in the disease process when serious and costly complications could be prevented. The history of autoimmune disease within a family is rarely part of a medical history questionnaire; yet this information is what would make a physician suspect the possibility of an autoimmune disease and the patients cannot offer the information because they are generally unaware of the connection among the different chronic illnesses occurring in their families. The public is also unaware of the common factors in diagnosis and treatment of autoimmune diseases. Autoimmune diseases are so prevalent amongst all people (in America alone, there are 50 million people with at least one autoimmune disease; most who have been diagnosed with one are at an increased risk of another). They are the #2 cause of chronic illnesses, but the funding for research is just so low (under 3% of the total funding given by NIH). Research can help in many ways, whether it helps a person learn to cope with one of these horrible illnesses or it finds a new treatment method.These disorders affect us all in so many ways. Whether its a grandmother, a brother, a son, a cousin, a friend. Shouldn’t we help?

My Birthday Wish

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Janet Morris

I'm from Huntsville, Alabama. I've got as many college credits as a doctorate candidate, and the GPA of some of them, too. I have a boss by the name of Amy Pond. She's a dachshund. My parents both grew up in Alabama.