Welcome to Global Mitochondrial Disease Awareness Week, 2017! Every year, the mitochondrial disease community comes together in September to spread the word about this neuromuscular disorder.
Some facts about "mito":
- Mitochondrial disease is a chronic, progressive disorder that occurs when the mitochondria of the cell cannot produce enough energy for cell or organ function.
- Estimates suggest that 1 in 4,000 people will face a diagnosis of mitochondrial disease.
- Mitochondrial disease symptoms differ from person to person and can first appear in infants, children, teens, or adults. Common symptoms include poor growth, loss of muscle coordination, muscle weakness and pain, seizures, vision and/or hearing loss, gastrointestinal issues, learning disabilities, and heart, liver, or kidney failure.
- Mitochondrial disease symptoms affect many different organ systems. The neurologic, digestive, musculoskeletal, and cardiovascular systems are most commonly affected.
- Mitochondrial disease is related to autism, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
There are tons of activities this week, including walks, Light Up for Mito, and Stay in Bed Day. I am hoping to post a gallery of Light Up For Mito once the event is over, so check back! (You can follow the hashtag on Twitter as well.) A partial list of international activities can be found here.
By passing this blog post on to other people, you are helping spread the word about a serious but poorly-known disease that millions of us live with every day. So please, post a link to Twitter, Facebook or other social media to do your part in raising awareness of this deadly condition!