A new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report estimates that one in four Americans lives with a rheumatic disease.

As a rheumatologist, I see these individuals every day, and chances are you know someone who is affected. Many don't look sick, but managing rheumatic disease is a life-long struggle that can make simple tasks difficult. 

Early intervention and treatment from a rheumatologist can improve the quality of life for people with rheumatic diseases.

I encourage my community members to learn more about rheumatic diseases and their signs and symptoms during Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month this September. The American College of Rheumatology has useful information and easy ways to get involved at www.SimpleTasks.org.

By increasing awareness about rheumatic diseases, we can help more people get the care they need.

Larry Dobbe, Stoddard

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