Do you suffer with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)?

Do you currently have/suffer with the affects of RA?  We have teamed up with researchers who are the leaders in the in-vitro diagnostic communities who need antibody rich plasma for further manufacturing into controls for test kit manufacturing.  Without plasma from patients who have this condition they are unable to keep up with the demand of test kit manufacturing because plasma is a crucial component in creating the positive and negative controls for the kits.  The medical research is growing rapidly and is becoming more demanding for these rare antibodies and are looking for patients like you.shutterstock_480131776.jpg

Each time you donate you are helping research and others all while being compensated for your donation and depending on your condition you can earn $100-$500 each time you donate and you can safely donate 2x per 7 day period.  Simply having the diagnosis is the first step in qualifying and the second is your antibody levels.  Given the plasms is being used for research they require that the patient have the diagnosis, but also have very high antibody levels which with most labs it will cap out the test as a > than number because that’s as high as the kit will go.

Donor participation is performed in accordance with the current FDA regulations and is overseen by our medical director who is a licensed physician in our FDA licensed and state regulated plasma center.  All patient information is kept confidential and within HIPAA guidelines and are also consented with our IRB protocol which also ensures patient privacy.

The antibodies we collect/you donate is done via a procedure called plasmapheresis, this procedure is similar to donating whole blood (i.e.: Red Cross, or other blood bank).  However plasma is the protein based substance that your blood cells float around in (that contains these antibodies), the difference is thru plasmapheresis you are getting your red blood cells returned thru this process.  When you donate whole blood you can only do so every 56 days/8 week as it takes your body to reproduce these, whereas plasma is replenished naturally within a 24-48 hours from your donation which allows you to donate more frequently.

What is rheumatoid arthritis (RA)?

Rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, is an autoimmune and inflammatory disease, which means that your immune system attacks healthy cells in your body by mistake, causing inflammation (painful swelling) in the affected parts of the body.

RA mainly attacks the joints, usually many joints at once. RA commonly affects joints in the hands, wrists, and knees. In a joint with RA, the lining of the joint becomes inflamed, causing damage to joint tissue. This tissue damage can cause long-lasting or chronic pain, unsteadiness (lack of balance), and deformity (misshapenness).

RA can also affect other tissues throughout the body and cause problems in organs such as the lungs, heart, and eyes.

What are the signs and symptoms of RA?

With RA, there are times when symptoms get worse, known as flares, and times when symptoms get better, known as remission.

Signs and symptoms of RA include:

  • Pain or aching in more than one joint.
  • Stiffness in more than one joint.
  • Tenderness and swelling in more than one joint.
  • The same symptoms on both sides of the body (such as in both hands or both knees).
  • Weight loss.
  • Fever.
  • Fatigue, or tiredness.
  • Weakness.

What causes RA?

RA is the result of an immune response in which the body’s immune system attacks its own healthy cells.  The specific causes of RA are unknown, but some factors can increase the risk of developing the disease.

What are the risk factors for RA?

Researchers have studied a number of genetic and environmental factors to determine if they change person’s risk of developing RA.

Characteristics that increase risk

  • Age. RA can begin at any age, but the likelihood increases with age. The onset of RA is highest among adults in their sixties.
  • Sex. New cases of RA are typically two-to-three times higher in women than men.
  • Genetics/inherited traits. People born with specific genes are more likely to develop RA. These genes, called HLA (human leukocyte antigen) class II genotypes, can also make your arthritis worse. The risk of RA may be highest when people with these genes are exposed to environmental factors like smoking or when a person is obese.
  • Smoking. Multiple studies show that cigarette smoking increases a person’s risk of developing RA and can make the disease worse.
  • History of live births. Women who have never given birth may be at greater risk of developing RA.
  • Early Life Exposures. Some early life exposures may increase risk of developing RA in adulthood.  For example, one study found that children whose mothers smoked had double the risk of developing RA as adults. Children of lower income parents are at increased risk of developing RA as adults.
  • Obesity. Being obese can increase the risk of developing RA. Studies examining the role of obesity also found that the more overweight a person was, the higher his or her risk of developing RA became.

Characteristics that can decrease risk

Unlike the risk factors above which may increase risk of developing RA, at least one characteristic may decrease risk of developing RA.

How is RA diagnosed?

RA is diagnosed by reviewing symptoms, conducting a physical examination, and doing X-rays and lab tests. It’s best to diagnose RA early—within 6 months of the onset of symptoms—so that people with the disease can begin treatment to slow or stop disease progression (for example, damage to joints).  Diagnosis and effective treatments, particularly treatment to suppress or control inflammation, can help reduce the damaging effects of RA.


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