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Juvenile Chronic Arthritis (Still's Disease) Print E-mail
by Ron Kennedy, M.D., Santa Rosa, CA

Dr. Kennedy Juvenile chronic arthritis is by definition a chronic arthritic disease in a child under the age of 16 years with symptoms which last longer than three months. It can be divided into four types and may be referred to as Still's disease.

No clear evidence of a genetic predisposition except in the case of the subclass involving familial spondylarthropathies (disk and joint disease running in families). However, a genetic predisposition must be considered with autoimmune diseases in general.

Autoimmune disorders are caused when the body's immune system, which is meant to defend the body against bacteria, viruses, and any other foreign product, malfunctions and produces antibodies against healthy tissue, cells and organs.

The subclass called juvenile rheumatoid arthritis is a rheumatic autoimmune disease characterized by chronic inflammation of the synovial tissue found in joints. It affects between 65,000 to 70,000 children in the United States and comprises about ten percent of juvenile chronic arthritis. The disease may develop at any age during childhood, and girls are more often affected than boys. This childhood rheumatic illness has many characteristics of adult onset autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.

Conventional treatment involves the use of Prednisone and other corticosteroids. Often patients are unable to tolerate the toxic side effects of these drugs.

The alternative, nutritional medicine approach is to identify hidden allergies by blood test and avoid those allergens (primarily foods). Also enzyme potentiated desensitization holds hope for putting the disease in long term remission.

As with all automimmune disorders, detoxification and dietary changes are usually helpful. For best results this should be done under the supervision of a doctor experienced in nutritional medicine.

The approach used in homeopathy is to attempt to restore the balance of the system using dilute solutions of natural substances specific to the disorder.

The information in this article is not meant to be medical advice.�Treatment for a medical condition should come at the recommendation of your personal physician.

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