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Natalie T., Age 10

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Natalie T.

Hi my name is Natalie. I just got diagnosed a couple months ago with JIA but my doctor thinks I have had it for a while over two years.  It started about a year ago.  I would wake up with pain and stiffness in my hands, wrist and fingers.  I complained,  but my mom didn't make much of it – she, too, thought it was growing pains until we noticed that now it wasn't just my hands and wrist that were swollen but my ankles for no reason. Finally after my complaining of pain and not being able to do certain things like open jars and pour my own glass of milk, my mom took me to my regular doctor and she referred me to Shriners hospital.  There I was examined and given a possible diagnosis of JIA.  I was told the closest specialist from our home was three hours away, so my mom has been taking me to San Francisco to be seen.  My doctor there has said my kind of arthritis is polyarticular.  I don't let my illness bring me down.  I am afraid to tell my friends, though, because I think I will get made fun of.  I hope I can get better soon so I can be able to do activities that I am not able to do now.  I will be doing the Jingle Bell Run/Walk this December 14th with my whole family, aunts, uncles and cousins.  I feel excited about that and all at the same time helping support the Arthritis Foundation.


Natalie T.

Hi my name is Natalie. I just got diagnosed a couple months ago with JIA but my doctor thinks I have had it for a while over two years.  It started about a year ago.  I would wake up with pain and stiffness in my hands, wrist and fingers.  I complained,  but my mom didn't make much of it – she, too, thought it was growing pains until we noticed that now it wasn't just my hands and wrist that were swollen but my ankles for no reason. Finally after my complaining of pain and not being able to do certain things like open jars and pour my own glass of milk, my mom took me to my regular doctor and she referred me to Shriners hospital.  There I was examined and given a possible diagnosis of JIA.  I was told the closest specialist from our home was three hours away, so my mom has been taking me to San Francisco to be seen.  My doctor there has said my kind of arthritis is polyarticular.  I don't let my illness bring me down.  I am afraid to tell my friends, though, because I think I will get made fun of.  I hope I can get better soon so I can be able to do activities that I am not able to do now.  I will be doing the Jingle Bell Run/Walk this December 14th with my whole family, aunts, uncles and cousins.  I feel excited about that and all at the same time helping support the Arthritis Foundation.

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