American Lung Association, CHEST Foundation and Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research join forces to raise awareness of sarcoidosis
Sarcoidosis campaign offers patients tools to proactively manage complex disease including new e-learning modules, digital gatherings and patient education materials
(April 2, 2018) - GLENVIEW, Ill.
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To coincide with National Sarcoidosis Awareness Month in April, the American Lung Association, the CHEST Foundation, and Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research (FSR) have partnered for the fourth annual Seek Answers. Inspire Results. campaign. The national awareness campaign encourages people living with sarcoidosis to take a proactive role in their treatment plan.
Sarcoidosis is a disease of unknown origin that causes the immune system to overreact, which can lead to health issues, including lung damage, skin rashes and eye disease, and can affect other organs of the body. With good medical care, most cases of sarcoidosis are controlled and do not cause lasting damage to the body. However, it is important for people living with sarcoidosis to assess all of their options through an open dialogue with their physician.
"Sarcoidosis continues to perplex both patients and doctors. Each case of sarcoidosis is unique, which makes it difficult to diagnose because symptoms vary and often mimic those of other diseases. While many patients do not experience serious health problems, 30 to 40 percent of people living with sarcoidosis have a persistent condition that may require personalized treatment," said Doreen Addrizzo-Harris, MD, CHEST Foundation President-Elect & Trustee. "We are excited to be expanding our awareness campaign this year and hope to provide patients, caregivers and clinicians with even more information, tools and treatment options."
With good medical care, most cases of sarcoidosis are controlled and do not cause lasting damage to the body. However, it is important for people living with sarcoidosis to assess all of their options through an open dialogue with their physician.
To enable this discussion, Seek Answers. Inspire Results. offers people living with sarcoidosis and their caregivers a simple toolkit available at chestnet.org/sarcoid to help them understand and manage their condition as well as resources to create awareness and spark conversations in the community. These tools include the "Sarcoid Five" – a list of five questions designed to start patient-doctor conversations to help people living with sarcoidosis understand treatment options and create a personalized plan to control their individual condition.
"Many people with pulmonary sarcoidosis think they have the flu or a respiratory infection before they're diagnosed with sarcoidosis. Although sarcoidosis can affect many different organs, it most commonly affects the lungs. Symptoms of pulmonary sarcoidosis can include cough, shortness of breath, chest pain or wheezing," said Albert Rizzo, MD, FACP, FACCP, Senior Medical Advisor to the American Lung Association. "A chest X-ray taken at these times of symptoms can be suggestive of pulmonary sarcoidosis and appropriate referral to a pulmonary specialist may be in order."
In addition to the toolkit, all three partners will be offering in-person and online opportunities to connect with healthcare providers, as well as other patients and caregivers through webinars, online support communities and Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research Patient Conferences throughout the United States. The campaign also encourages people to increases public awareness for this disease by equipping patients with resources to spark conversations in their
"We are proud to partner with the American Lung Association and the CHEST Foundation this year as we continue to help patients navigate this complex condition," said Ginger Spitzer, Executive Director of Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research. "By working together to ensure that individuals living with sarcoidosis are well-resourced and engaging all stakeholders as partners in raising public awareness for sarcoidosis, this campaign assures patients and their loved ones that they are not alone."
During the month of April, join in the conversation by downloading a Seek Answers. Inspire Results. social media badge to help raise awareness. For more information, visit Chestnet.org/sarcoid, or call the American Lung Association's free Lung HelpLine at 1-800-LUNGUSA to talk to a certified respiratory therapist.
About the American Lung Association
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.
About CHEST and the CHEST Foundation
CHEST is the global leader in advancing best patient outcomes through innovative chest medicine education, clinical research, and team-based care. Its mission is to champion the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of chest diseases through education, communication, and research. It serves as an essential connection to clinical knowledge and resources for its 19,000 members from around the world who provide patient care in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine. For information about the American College of Chest Physicians and its flagship journal CHEST®, visit chestnet.org.
The CHEST Foundation, the charitable foundation of the American College of Chest Physicians, champions lung health by supporting clinical research, community service, and patient education. Through CHEST Foundation-supported programs, CHEST's 19,000+ members engage in advancing the lung health of millions of patients in local communities around the world. More than 95 cents of every dollar raised goes toward advancing the foundation’s mission-based programming. Since its inception, the foundation has provided more than $10 million in funding for clinical research and community service, with a reach that spans more than 60 countries. For more information about the CHEST Foundation, visit chestfoundation.org.
Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease wherein the immune system goes into overdrive, causing cells to group together into clumps called granulomas. When too many granulomas form on an organ, they may interfere with the organ's function. Sarcoidosis can affect any organ in the body; however, lungs and lymph nodes are involved in more than 90 percent of patients. Although anyone can develop sarcoidosis, it is most common among people between the ages of 20 and 40, and more severe and more likely to be chronic in African Americans.
About the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research
The Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research is the nation’s leading nonprofit organization dedicated to finding a cure for this disease and to improving care for sarcoidosis patients. Since its establishment in 2000, FSR has fostered over $4 million in sarcoidosis-specific research efforts and has worked diligently to provide resources to thousands. The Foundation connects and provides resources for over 40,000 sarcoidosis patients, and directly funds research initiatives critical to breakthroughs. For more information about FSR, to volunteer, or make a donation, visit: stopsarcoidosis.org
The Seek Answers. Inspire Results. awareness campaign is supported in part by grant funding from Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals.