11 January 2012 | Ottawa

The Rare Disease Next Door

Being diagnosed with a rare disease, such as an uncommon genetic
disorder or an unusual infectious or autoimmune disease, can be a
lonely and frightening experience. Because of their rarity, these
illnesses are often poorly understood, and don’t generally inspire
big fundraising campaigns in the same way that more common
diseases do. As a result, the people affected by rare diseases
often feel abandoned.

But that could change. When you consider the cumulative impact
of the thousands of rare diseases, they add up to one big health care
challenge, as they could affect up to 10% of the Canadian population.
Advances in technology, such as next-generation DNA sequencing,
are offering hope to patients. As we translate these findings into a
personalized approach to medicine, there may be a lot more we can
do to help people who suffer from uncommon illnesses.

Join us for a discussion on this important issue!