x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Arthritis support group organises runs

The Friends of Arthritis support group is organising three daily runs to raise funds and increase awareness of the disease.

SHARJAH // The Friends of Arthritis support group is organising three daily runs to raise funds and increase awareness of the disease. The runs will cover 2.5km to 4km each day and will be held Saturday through Monday, which is World Arthritis Day. Participants can register for Dh10 at the Supreme Council of Family Affairs, Sahara Mall, Mega Mall or the co-operative society. Rheumatoid arthritis is a disease in which inflammation causes the destruction of joints, making them stiff, painful and swollen.

Although there are no UAE statistics for the disease, global figures show that about one in 100 people has rheumatoid arthritis, said Dr Amjad Gamil, a senior medical manager at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, sponsor of the fund-raising event. Women are affected two to three times more often than men. Arthritis can occur at any age, but it most commonly affects women between the ages of 20 and 50. "Rheumatoid arthritis can affect any joint, but the most commonly affected are those of the wrist, hands and fingers, toes, ankles and knees," said Salah al Nurman, the head of Friends of Arthritis in Sharjah. "The elbows and shoulders are often affected, too."

Joint damage causes deformities to develop, which means many people also suffer disability, depression, fatigue and anaemia. While some people are genetically susceptible to rheumatoid arthritis, it can also be triggered by stress, infection or trauma.
ykakande@thenational.ae