“Strange Body” Offers Insight Into Managing Chronic Illnesses

Book Sales Benefit the Autoimmune Disease Association

Released: 16-Jun-2014 11:00 AM EDT
Source Newsroom: American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA)
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Newswise — Eastpointe, MI, June 16, 2014 – What began as a letter to her two children about her experiences living with multiple autoimmune diseases, quickly morphed into a book by Donna Weir. “Strange Body: Common Autoimmune Disease Questions Answered” chronicles Weir’s life during the past decade as she struggled with ailments that often left her weak and combative. The book is on sale now and the royalties from digital downloads purchased through July 15 will be donated to the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA).

In the autobiography, Weir details how an early childhood phobia, emetophobia, or the fear of vomiting, proved to be one of her autoimmune diseases stressors. She maintains that “Strange Body” is not a medical manual but rather a book of her experiences. Having been diagnosed with eight autoimmune diseases and currently being tested for another, Weir includes insights from the Mayo Clinic to help substantiate her claims.

“The goal of the book was never to make money. I just wanted to document what was happening to me in case my children started to experience autoimmune disease symptoms. In the process and through countless hours of research, I uncovered what I felt to be great information that could be used to assist other autoimmune disease patients, thus, the book was born,” says Weir who adds that “Strange Body” is the first book in a trilogy.
Currently, the book is available for $2.99 on Kindle Download, Nook and also available on Smashwords. The book can also be purchased from Amazon and Lulu.com.

“Donna’s manuscript is nothing short of interesting. She successfully writes about her own experiences with autoimmune disease as each patient has his or her own story to tell. It is my hope that her story inspires other patients to come forward and speak about their autoimmune disease journey. Their stories will optimistically translate not only into awareness but also much needed research dollars,” says Virginia T. Ladd, President and Executive Director of AARDA.

About the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA):
The American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association is dedicated to the eradication of autoimmune diseases and the alleviation of suffering and the socioeconomic impact of autoimmunity through fostering and facilitating collaboration in the areas of education, public awareness, research, and patient services in an effective, ethical and efficient manner.

AARDA is the only national nonprofit health agency dedicated to bringing a national focus to autoimmunity, the major cause of serious chronic diseases. Approximately 50 million Americans, 20 percent of the population or one in five people, suffer from autoimmune diseases. Women are more likely than men to be affected; some estimates say that 75 percent of those affected--some 37.5 million people--are women. Still, with these statistics, autoimmunity is rarely discussed as a women's health issue.

For more information on autoimmunity and/or AARDA, contact AARDA by phone at (586) 776-3900 or on the web at www.aarda.org.

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