Invisible Suffering

This event took place on:
Saturday, May 18, 2:00 - 3:30pm
Location
arthritis, hands

Tim Hamilton/Flickr Creative Commons

Conditions like cancer, heart disease and AIDS strike fear into the heart of anybody with a elementary knowledge of health. So-called "invisible" conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, chronic migraine headaches and chronic fatigue syndrome, on the other hand, may be met with blank stares – or worse, dismissiveness. But to the person who lives with these conditions, life is profoundly different and more difficult than it was before its onset.

This Crawford Family Forum panel discussed what makes a medical condition "invisible": What is unique about the suffering of someone who has R.A. or chronic migraine headaches? What challenges does that person face in communicating her or his condition to a health provider? And is this a matter of public health?

This discussion also looked at how invisible conditions affect low-income communities, where there's a widespread lack of access to primary care, let alone the specialists who treat R.A. and severe migraines. What options does an uninsured, single mother living with migraines have?

Guests:

Dr. Andrew Charles, professor of neurology at UCLA's David Geffen School of Medicine and the director of the school's Headache Research & Treatment Program

Arlene Grau, patient living with rheumatoid arthritis, migraines and fibromyalgia

Nancy Clifton-Hawkins, principal consultant at public health consulting firm Clifton-Hawkins and Associates

Moderator:

José Martinez, KPCC reporter on health and quality of life in South Los Angeles

@KPCCforum
@jose_martinez
#invisiblepain


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