Carol was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in the prime of life, at age 19. She has lived her entire adult life with the disease, so has first-hand experience from the patient's perspective. Carol's husband Rick (deceased) also had rheumatoid arthritis.
Carol worked as a Registered Medical Technologist in a hospital laboratory for 16 years until arthritis forced her to prematurely end her career. After leaving her job in the laboratory, Carol started and moderated the first weekly Rheumatoid Arthritis Chatroom/Support Group on America Online in 1995.
Carol began writing about arthritis professionally in 1997. As a writer and patient advocate for people living with arthritis and chronic illness, Carol authored The Everything Health Guide to Arthritis (published in 2007) and Natural Arthritis Treatment (published in 2012).
In 2012, Carol was named one of SharecareNow's Top 10 Influencers in the Online Rheumatoid Arthritis Community. In 2014, Carol was also named one of Sharecare's Top 10 Social HealthMakers for Osteoarthritis.
Carol has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Cleveland State University, in Ohio. She also completed a one-year internship in a School of Medical Technology and became a Registered Medical Technologist, MT (ASCP). She is currently a member of the Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals (ARHP) and the Arthritis Foundation.
Arthritis is a prevalent disease. In the US, more than 50 million adults have self-reported doctor-diagnosed arthritis, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Approximately 21 million adults have arthritis and arthritis-attributable activity limitation.
Arthritis is not a single disease. That's the biggest misconception. Arthritis refers to a group of more than 100 different diseases and conditions which have characteristic pain, stiffness and swelling in or around the joints. Early diagnosis and treatment are imperative to slow progression of the disease and to help prevent permanent joint damage and disability.
Arthritis can affect anyone at any age - not just the elderly! Specialists in the diagnosis and treatment of arthritis and related rheumatic diseases are called rheumatologists. I'm here to help you understand essential information about arthritis, including early signs and symptoms, how to get diagnosed, medication options, and other treatments. My goal is to help you learn to live with a disease that can be life-changing, to help you cope with it, and to provide practical advice.