CHICAGO | April 1, 2021
This April, for Sarcoidosis Awareness Month, the American Lung Association and the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research (FSR) will be partnering to raise awareness and provide opportunities for those affected by sarcoidosis to learn more about how they can protect their health.
Individuals with the rare autoimmune disease sarcoidosis live with ongoing concerns about their health vulnerabilities. The COVID-19 pandemic presents new risk and uncertainty for those with compromised immune systems. Since 90% of sarcoidosis patients have lung impacts, it is more important than ever to raise awareness about this disease in the face of COVID-19 and its major threats to lung health.
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 symptoms of sarcoidosis are controlled. The goal of treatment is remission, meaning that the condition is no longer causing any complications. In severe cases, sarcoidosis can be life-threatening if it progresses to heart or severe lung disease. It is important for people living with sarcoidosis to assess all of their treatment options through an open dialogue with their physician. Individuals on immunosuppressant medications due to sarcoidosis might have an increased risk of developing more severe complications of COVID-19 if they contract the illness.
Throughout April, the two non-profit partners will be offering new educational and support resources for sarcoidosis patients and their caregivers, as well as clinicians who are interested in sarcoidosis education and awareness. Both organizations are also dedicated to keeping patients informed about COVID-19 as more science-based evidence about the illness becomes known. April’s Sarcoidosis Awareness Campaign is supported in part by grant funding from Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals.
Patients and caregivers can learn more about sarcoidosis and access these resources at Lung.org/sarcoidosis or StopSarcoidosis.org. Registered nurses, respiratory therapists and counselors are also available for one-on-one support through the Lung Association’s Lung HelpLine at 1-800-LUNGUSA or online chat at Lung.org/helpline. New this year, the Lung Association is offering virtual Zoom meetups as part of its new Betters Breathers Network. The Foundation for Sarcoidosis’ Patient Navigators are available to provide one-on-one support for those newly diagnosed with sarcoidosis, in the diagnosis process, experiencing their first flare, and/or new organ manifestation. Learn from global experts in sarcoidosis opportunities and engage in our support and wellness programs by visiting The Foundation for Sarcoidosis’ Events Page.
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.
The Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research is the leading international organization dedicated to finding a cure for sarcoidosis and to improving care for sarcoidosis patients. Since its establishment in 2000, FSR has fostered over $5 million in sarcoidosis-specific research efforts. For more information about FSR visit: stopsarcoidosis.org or call 312-341-0500
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