New Initiative Aims to Decrease Cardiovascular Risk for Rheumatoid Arthritis Sufferers.
The National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS) has recently announced the launch of their online, interactive educational programme ‘Love your Heart’. The programme is to help those with Rheumatoid Arthritis and to understand why they are at an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and what impact RA can have on the most import organ, the heart.
Developed in partnership with Consultant Rheumatologist Dr Holly John the online programme has had extremely promising results that its achieved in a face to face group setting. NRAS is making the programme widely available to everyone with the condition to give a better understanding as to why they are at an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
This will also provide necessary tools to help them lower their own individual risk.
Dr Holly John explains…
The increased risk of CVD for RA sufferers has the same level of severity as those who suffer with type 2 diabetes.
“It’s astonishing how many people with RA don’t know that their condition could be detrimental to their heart. Once aware, it’s very easy to manage risk factors that are within their control from home with a healthier lifestyle, so Love Your Heart will be able to significantly raise awareness of this and help to address this major co-morbidity which can shorten the lives of those with RA.”
When is it available?
The online programme is free of charge and available for people to register here.
People will be able to:
- Understand the reasons why RA increases the CVD risk.
- Calculate a QRISK2 score (a GP recognised prediction algorithm for CVD).
- Learn how to reduce the risk of CVD.
- Log progress through a series of behavioural goals.
Alisa Bosworth, Founder and CEO of NRAS said:
In spite of the numbers of people with RA in the UK (>400,000) it does not have the public awareness of diseases such as Parkinson’s (127,000) and Multiple Sclerosis (100,000).
“It is still a relatively misunderstood and invisible disease. Getting to a diagnosis can therefore often be challenging as people don’t recognise the symptoms as a medical emergency. Equally, the increased risk of CVD is relatively unknown and so I’m really excited to have worked with Dr. John and hope that the Love your Heart programme will help all those with RA, like myself, to lead a longer and healthier life by addressing those risk factors that are within our own control.”