Photo: Lupus survivors, their family members and friends wear their purple shirts Thursday night at Brodie Field. There were over 120 people in attendance. Credit: Carla Whitley
Pat McKinnon, a lupus survivor, is asking that the local community join the Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) by wearing purple today in support of “Put on Purple Day,” a national campaign for lupus awareness.
On Thursday night at Brodie Field, supporters gathered wearing their purple shirts: “Tift County was painted purple by lupus survivors and their family and friend supporters,” McKinnon said.
Lupus Awareness Month serves as an annual grassroots effort to raise awareness of the disease and secure funds for lupus research as well as support for those afflicted.
“Research shows that most Americans know little or nothing about lupus and its devastating impact on millions of people,” McKinnon said. “You can change that. Band together for lupus awareness and help the LFA fight this unpredictable and sometimes fatal disease by showing support for those who suffer from it.”
In 2009, the LFA moved the annual Lupus Awareness Month observance to May.
“May provides many opportunities, including Mother’s Day, National Women’s Health Week and Women’s Health Check-up Day to promote awareness of lupus and show support for those who suffer from the disease,“ McKinnon said. “The warm weather is a good time for outdoor events and represents an opportunity to take charge of your health.”
When people talk about lupus, they usually mean systemic lupus erythematosus, its most common type. Symptoms are different for every person, and sometimes it isn’t diagnosed. The LFA believes that about 16,000 new cases are reported across the country each year.