American Lung Association, CHEST Foundation and Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research join forces to raise awareness of sarcoidosisSarcoidosis campaign offers patients tools to proactively manage complex disease including new e-learning modules, digital gatherings and patient education materials
GLENVIEW, IL | April 2, 2018
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.
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.
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