Feb. 28 is Rare Disease Day, when the collective rare disease community raises awareness of the conditions with which we live and advocates for access to new novel treatments like Spinraza, the first FDA-approved disease-modifying drug for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a rare neuromuscular disease that affects people like 18-year-old Marley Robinson. Spinraza is making . . .
On Dec. 23, 2018, the MDA office of Minnesota and the Dakotas received its biggest gift ever — and it came as a surprise from one man who felt connected to MDA’s mission. Steven Williams, a native of Clarkfield, Minn. and a Vietnam War veteran, graduated from college in the mid-1970s with a degree in . . .
Jenni Gold has been writing, directing and producing film shorts, movies and TV shows for more than 20 years. She’ll tell you, since she was a kid making movies with a Hi8 camcorder, she’s been in love with Hollywood for a lot longer. She’ll also tell you there’s a problem with it. It’s failing the . . .
Growing up with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT), Lainie Ishbia learned about living with invisible disability — experiencing the daily struggle of movement without looking, outwardly and obviously, as if that’s the case. She also learned, once ankle-foot orthotics (AFOs, or braces) made her disability visible, those devices designed to help make movement easier can also make . . .
Patrick Cusick’s journey with MDA — and with muscular dystrophy — started 12 years ago, in, of all places, a life insurance office. Twenty-nine at the time, the Ohio native and his wife were expecting their first child, and making preparations as parents (or soon-to-be parents) do. Securing life insurance meant taking some medical tests; . . .
Since 1897, the Boston Marathon has held a special place in the hearts of Bostonians. Held every third Monday in April, the Boston Marathon is one of the most famous races in the world, attracting runners of all abilities to a beautiful, grueling course that begins in the hilly western suburbs of Boston and ends . . .
Growing up, Marc van de Rijn was always interested in medicine. After briefly considering a career working with computers, a sudden health challenge after his freshman year of college made him realize that instead of sitting behind a desk, he wanted to work with people and become a doctor. “After my freshman year, I suffered . . .
Ryan Farnsworth, 31, is passionate about spreading a positive message to others going through a tough time. Since receiving an ALS diagnosis in 2015, Ryan has made a conscious effort to maximize every moment of every day. As he has grown weaker, he has become even more determined to make a lasting impact on the . . .
Since his call-up to the Philadelphia Phillies in August 2017, Rhys Hoskins has taken Major League Baseball by storm. A prolific hitter, Rhys burst onto the scene late last summer with a home run barrage that made national news and shattered rookie records along the way. In just 10 months he has become the face . . .
In 2007, Karen Toennis received an unexpected phone call. On the other end of the line was Dr. Stanley Appel, the neurologist who cared for Karen’s husband, Mike, during his 13-year battle with ALS. They had not spoken since Mike’s passing the year before, but Dr. Appel had a question for Karen. “At first I’m . . .