Earlier this month, Karen Reynolds took a trip to New York City to help raise awareness for Sarcoidosis. Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease that can affect any organ in the body, resulting from an overreaction of the immune system. It is estimated to affect about 200,000 Americans, several of whom joined Karen in New York City during Sarcoidosis Awareness Month.
Karen was diagnosed with Sarcoidosis almost 10 years ago. After visiting several doctors without finding an answer, a biopsy on her eye finally revealed the disease. She then began meeting with local organizations in Alabama and working with doctors at The University of Alabama Birmingham (UAB) to receive treatment.
As the Sarcoidosis continued to progress, it began to affect Karen’s central nervous system limiting her mobility and made her sensitive to light, sound, and heat. Karen visited MobilityWorks in Chattanooga, TN and purchased an accessible 2010 Honda Odyssey. Today, she splits her time between Alabama and Ohio. Karen has started living part-time outside of Cincinnati to be with her one-year-old grandson Eli.
“Having a wheelchair accessible van from MobilityWorks has allowed me to get out of isolation and for that, I am so grateful”, said Karen.
During the first week of April, Karen drove to New York City to be part of a Sarcoidosis Awareness campaign organized by Long Island and New Jersey support groups. Karen joined several other supporters and attended tapings of the Today Show, Dr. OZ, and Good Morning America.
Their message was to alert the general public that this disease exists and that a cure needs to be found. Several famous people have passed away from Sarcoidosis including Actor Bernie Mac, Basketball Player Reggie White, and possibly the famous composer Sebastian Bach. However, the disease does not receive much attention from the media.
Thank you, Karen, for being an active voice in the community! For more information on Sarcoidosis or to donate to their cause please visit www.stopsarcoidosis.org