Sarah is 17 years old and in eleventh grade. When she was 14 she had ankle pain that was dismissed by the doctor as growing pains. After 14 months of doctor appointments, tests and physical therapy, Sarah was diagnosed with Enthesitis-Related Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis JIA. She has had pain in her jaw, ankles, knees, shoulders, hips, back and baby toe, fatigue and stiffness. Sarah also has several other autoimmune related diseases including Hashimotos Hypothyroid, Dysautonomia, Metabolic Acidosis, Pseudotumor Cerebri and Papilledema. She is treated here locally by rheumatology at Nemours Children’s Hospital. She receives infusions and injections as part of her treatment.
Sarah is stronger than JA! She has to spend a lot of time at doctor appointments, tests and treatment for JA. Despite her challenges, however, she continues the activities she loves including ballet, volunteering at the zoo, babysitting, performing at the local theatre, and training and showing her dogs. Juvenile Arthritis does not define her. She is supported by her very special soul dog, Suri!
Sarah appreciates all of the opportunities and support the Arthritis Foundation has given her. She discovered she wasn’t alone in this battle at the National Juvenile Arthritis Conference meeting new JA friends. She has also experienced Camp Boggy Creek where she just got to be a kid and have fun!
Sarah’s dream is a cure for Juvenile Arthritis! Thank you to the Arthritis Foundation for allowing Sarah to be the Youth Honoree. She is so happy to share her story. See you at the Jingle Bell Run!
To donate or join Sarah's team click here.