LA - New Orleans

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Arthritis Support Network launched: 2017

Arthritis Support Network Leader: Kelly               Type of Arthritis: Rheumatoid Arthritis

About this Arthritis Support Network:   

New Orleans is a gumbo pot with people from all walks of life and an amazing amount of life experience. I was only a teenager when I was diagnosed and I would have loved a community of support during I time where I felt completely helpless. My vision for the New Orleans Arthritis Support Network is to offer a community and family atmosphere for the people of New Orleans. A safe haven where they can discuss their problems and be surrounded by people who know exactly what they are going through.

 About: Kelly

I am a born and raised New Orleanian. I enjoy everything about my city and enjoy sharing that passion with others. Food, family and fun drive myself and all of us here in NOLA. I graduated from the University of New Orleans with a degree in marketing and a lifetime of experience I wouldn't change for the world. I currently work in the publishing world at Renaissance Publishing. I run both of the company's websites ( and as well as all of their social media sites for all seven publications. I have a monthly "HealthBeat" column in the company's flagship magazine New Orleans Magazine, where I talk about my health and experiences. I also act as the main writer for the New Orleans Bride Magazine daily wedding blog "Let Them Eat Cake," along with being the magazine's associate editor. When I am not working, I love trying new restaurants around the city, spending time with my family, eating as much wine and cheese as I can get my hands on and loving on my chiweenie pup Hugo Peabody – yes, after the character in "Bye Bye Birdie."

I did not have a support group when I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at age 19. I had no one in my family who knew what I was experiencing or who could relate to what I was going through. As a teenager, it is uncommon to find other people your age who have similar issues or who can understand and relate. I wanted to become an Arthritis Support Network Leader and start a network in New Orleans for those like me. Everyone, no matter what age, needs a shoulder to lean on or just someone who gets it, who understands the pain and frustration. I want to be that shoulder and outlet for other people. This is my way of giving back and saying, "you know what, I'm going to fight this and fight this with other people who know exactly what I'm dealing with."


To join this Arthritis Support Network, please click the "Join this Group” button above and we will send you updates about upcoming events via email. 

Meeting Location and Times: 

Head over to the Calendar of Events to RSVP your attendance.

Complete details with location and times will be posted on this website and cross promoted to our Arthritis Support Group New Orleans LA Facebook page. Please like and follow us!



All subscribers to this group agree to adhere to the Support Group Participant Guidelines.



Submitted by roxane g on

Hello everyone,

My name is roxane and I'm new to LA and I live on the northshore.  I am looking forward to meeting everyone and sharing our joys and trials.  Gentle hugs to everyone!

Groups audience: 

Brandi Thomas-Scott's picture
Submitted by Brandi Thomas-Scott on
Going through any medical issue in this realm of physical uncertainty very difficult, tiring, pain, depressing, and lonely at times. But know that this group offer us the ability to meet and interact with those who share are struggles is wonder.
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TheBlueMorpho's picture
Submitted by TheBlueMorpho on

Hello Fellow Fighters,


All the Good stuff:

I am many things....wife, mother, step-mother, sister, daughter, friend, designer, consultant, dancer, photographer and comedian.  

I recently remarried an amazing man who's equally as nerdy and quirky as I, and it is working pretty well so far.  

Professionally, I am a Grapic Designer turn Brand Marketing Strategists and my jobs have allowed me to hone skils in the areas of digital and traditional advertising, strategy and digital analytics, media buying, large scale project management, film production, social media, talent selection, and photography.


Getting remarried has made me not only a mother of one audacious pre-teen girl but added two more daughters and a son all between the ages of 11-15. I finally have a full house of love and laughter.  That journey in itself has been an amazing blessing. Through my trials of a 4 year period of loss and readjustment from a divorce, loss of my mother, I can see the collateral beauty of it all. I prayed for an angel to hang me, even for a little while, and he gave me 5.  Not a bad deal :)


And...the not so good


A little over a year ago, I started having daily flu-like symptoms and fever that never stopped.  One day I just started feeling cold and sacked with exhaustion that would just wipe me out. After a few months, I started experiencing severe abdominal attacks and severe back that was affecting my entire spine...basically pain from head to toe. Fevers persisted, doctors tested and then scratched their heads and tested some more but with no real direction to go on.  I was given the news....."You have some sort of very rare autoimmune or autoimflammtory process, which one?.....


The dramatic soga continued on with no treatments for months, through christmas and now we are here in the spring of 2017.  Then, last but no least, the cognitive impairments began (mental fog, forgetfulness, anxiety, waves of severe depression, agitation, frustration, etc.


BUT....finally and after over 20 specialists counsults, battery of testing for everything I could imagine and never even knew existed, and two trips to Mayo Clinic, we seem to have arrived.....formal diagnosis: unicorn :)

Just kidding :)


I am the proud owner of not only ONE but TWO diseases active at the same time:


Anklyosing Spondylitis and AOSD (Adult Onset Still's Disease) - Both Rare Diseases ...go figure.  If my mom was still here with me she would have said "You did it the 'Kelli' way, once again" - which means the hard way :).  Booth share similar arthritic features and they are collaboratively wrecking my mind and body as I type this. However! I remain hopeful and determined that I will have a full, vibrant life dispite the new development in this journey we call life. And that is the reason why I am here.  We are not meant to walk paths in life alone. Even though I have an amazing and supportive husband and family, I still fully believe engaging with people who walk similar paths to ours is a necessity.  I hope we can all connect and I look forward to sharing your experience with you if you will allow!


Press On,




Groups audience: 

Brandi Thomas-Scott's picture
Submitted by Brandi Thomas-Scott on
Right now I am constantly in pain and it is beginning to affect my career and my PhD program. On of being a wife and a mother, I feel like my life is falling apart. I have gain weight due the pain and being able to exercise like I used to. It just depressing and I feel alone. Hopefully I will meet others who will help this not be such a scary situation.
Groups audience: 




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