Headline Hits, Under Attack, Fallout & Pastimes

Headline Hits, Under Attack, Fallout & Pastimes

Headline Hits, Under Attack, Fallout & Pastimes 2560 1914 AEPC Health

Connectivity Matters

We’ve all experienced it – the frustration of trying to have a phone conversation, only to be hindered by a poor cell connection. You catch at best, every other word, and find yourself repeatedly saying, “I can’t hear you.” And who hasn’t experienced those moments when you’re trying to send a text or load a webpage, only to watch in frustration as the little loading icon spins endlessly, mocking your need for information? It’s a stark reminder of just how reliant we are on strong, stable connections!

Similarly, just as we depend on stable internet connections for communication, our bodies rely on healthy connective tissues to function properly. While diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus are well-known examples of autoimmune connective tissue diseases, it’s the less widely recognized scleroderma that is the most fatal of all rheumatologic conditions.

Since June is Scleroderma Awareness Month, let’s delve into some information about this lesser known disease

Skin Deep
Scleroderma occurs when the body’s immune system produces an excess of collagen, causing the skin and tissues to harden, a condition known as fibrosis. This hardening can lead to severe complications in essential organs like the heart, lungs, and digestive system.

The term “scleroderma” originates from the Greek words “sclero,” meaning hardening, and “derma,” meaning skin. One of the  earliest descriptions of the condition was in the 18th century by an Italian doctor named Carlo Curzio, who documented a case of severe skin thickening in a 17-year-old girl. In 1836, another physician named Giovambattista Fantonetti used the term to describe patients with dark, leathered skin and mobility issues due to skin tightening.

Who & Why?
Scleroderma mostly affects women, with around 80% of patients being female. However, men and children can also develop the condition. It usually appears between the ages of 30 and 50, impacting individuals of all racial and ethnic backgrounds, although it may be more severe in African Americans.

While the exact cause of scleroderma is still a mystery, researchers suspect various factors may play a role in its development. These include genetic predisposition, exposure to certain environmental substances like chemicals, abnormalities in the immune system, and changes in hormonal levels.

Currently, there is no cure for scleroderma and treatment aims to manage symptoms and prevent complications. Treatment options include anti-inflammatory medications, topical creams, and immunosuppressants to regulate the overactive immune response.

Check out Under Attack for more on scleroderma and other autoimmune diseases!

Happy reading,

Suzanne Daniels

  • Headline Hits: current healthcare news, decline in uninsured rate, GLP-1 for sleep apnea, how extreme heat kills.
  • Under Attack: Four things to know about Scleroderma, autoimmune disease & mental health, obesity drugs for arthritis & more.
  • Fallout: the unregulated life coach industry, impact of hospital cyberattacks on patient care, and what is an urgent care emergency center?
  • Pastimes: including my personal favorite, For 75 Years, Runners Have Raced in Colorado Tethered to Donkeys!

Enjoy the weekend!

Suzanne Daniels, Ph.D.
AEPC President
P.O. Box 1416
Birmingham, MI 48012
Office: (248) 792-2187
Email: [email protected]

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