Celebrities and Their Journey in Battling Arthritis

Arthritis is a common condition. This disease shows up in different forms, like rheumatoid, osteoarthritis, gout, and lupus. These are all considered autoimmune disorders, in which common symptoms are swelling, stiffness, and joint pains. This disease doesn’t discriminate. It attacks people who are prone to acquiring it, no matter what people do in their lives. Arthritis doesn’t necessarily target older people, as even younger ones could also have it because of a genetic compound. The ache that arthritis brings is tough to deal with most of the time. Still, many people, including celebrities, musicians, and athletes who battle this disease, have managed to live with it, with the help of some medication or physical therapy. If you are one of those who are prone or have been suffering from arthritis, you might find some common ground with these celebrities’ stories on how they were able to cope up with their battles on a daily basis. Please read up on their stories, and hopefully, take it as an inspiration to live one day at a time.


Dorothy Hodgkin is a British chemist who is known for being the third woman who won a Nobel Prize for her work with penicillin in 1964. She was the person behind the advanced technique of x-ray crystallography. Despite the success she had in her 35 years of work of being a chemist, Dorothy was battling rheumatoid arthritis. Her doctor diagnosed her with this disorder at the age of 28. The main symptoms of her illness involved her hands. Dorothy would feel pain in her swollen hands. Despite the problems she experienced, she continued to do her job. In the 1980s, Dorothy kept herself away from the public due to her condition. She also probably had secured health insurance to aid in her battle. Finally, at the age of 84, she passed away. Despite that, we remember her for her outstanding contributions in the field of science that resonates until today.


Doctor Barnard was born in South Africa. He specialized as a cardiac surgeon. Barnard was the first doctor who performed the world’s first human-to-human heart transplant in 1967. The successful operation of Louis Washkansky led to him being able to regain consciousness and freely converse with his spouse. Barnard was undoubtedly a fantastic doctor, which paved him the way to become the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery’s head in Cape Town, South Africa. Unfortunately, he retired from his position because he couldn’t do any more surgeries when he developed rheumatoid arthritis. Despite that, Christiaan was a famous doctor recognized internationally. However, he had to deal with lawyers three times due to troubles in wedded bliss. He lived for 78 incredible years, before succumbing to an asthma attack in 2001.


Raoul Dufy was a French artist who is most famous and known for making beautiful ceramic designs as well as certain textiles. His style is mainly Fauvist, from which he adapted colorful patterns and schemes. A lot of people recognized his investments in talent and art, to the extent that Paul Poiret, a famous fashion designer, commissioned him for his work. However, in the 1950s, an illness of rheumatoid arthritis was developed in Raoul’s hands. Life magazine featured his showcased work with his deformed right hand. Due to this disorder, Raoul was prevented from painting more works. He would sometimes utilize his left hand, and it wasn’t until doctors treated his illness with cortisone shots that his pain was somehow eased.


Glenn Frey was a musician rock icon who is a co-founder of the Eagles. He played the guitar and the keyboards. But more than that, Frey wrote most of the band’s songs. Shortly after the breakup of the well-loved rock band, Glenn made a successful career as a solo artist. However, in 2000, the musician developed a rheumatoid disease. Glenn rarely spoke about it at the time, but he was already taking medication to ease the pain and for its treatment as well. Sadly, he suffered from stomach ulcers and colitis for 15 years due to his intake of drug treatments. In January of 2016, he lost the intense fight against the complications. Although the medication might have caused him his untimely passing, it also gave him an investment and extension in time to enjoy life even for just a little while.


Golnesa is a reality television star from Bravo’s Shahs of Sunset, who was brave enough to show the documentation of her journey for having arthritis. She is currently 38 years old. But three years ago, we got a glimpse of the pain she was experiencing, which was too painful to watch, given the realistic depiction on screen. In an episode, she had to extract a fluid on her swollen knee because it made walking hard for her to do. GG, as she is fondly called, has also shared her journey with the illness on her Instagram, saying she might look healthy outside, but she has to be tough and conquer the condition. GG is undergoing constant treatment, and with her funds from Shahs of Sunset, she has surely secured great health insurance that would rightfully serve her needs. We can only pray and hope she gets better in time.


Camryn Manheim is a famous actress who is famously known for her role in ABC’s drama The Practice. Camryn was always an open book about her personal life and her opinions, which openly expresses a variety of issues, such as gay rights and the difficulties she’s going through with rheumatoid arthritis. Camryn discovered her illness with moderate RA in the early 2000s. She wanted to let everyone know the daily struggles and difficulties of the people with the same illness. For this reason, she invested a part of her investment money on the Arthritis Foundation. Despite having challenges due to her condition, Camryn didn’t let it become a hindrance for her to continue working and taking care of her son.


Jennie Garth gained prominence for her role on Beverly Hills, 90210 and What I Like About You. She tied the knot with actor Peter Facinelli, but they ended up having to see an attorney after they ended their relationship in 2013. Jennie has three daughters with Peter; one of them had juvenile rheumatoid arthritis at a young age of six.

Anyone could just imagine how Jennie handles seeing her daughter in pain and going back and forth to the hospital. However, the good thing about Lola is that though she suffers from constant pain, she has always been a fighter. She is cooperative with her continuous medication and treatment.


Aida is an American actress who is famously known for her appearance on The Sopranos. She was only 12 years old when she developed rheumatoid arthritis, and she had painful memories about fighting with the disease. She has been working now with the Arthritis Foundation to spread awareness about the illness. She was even one of the spokeswomen in the early 2000s pushing the said advocacy. Aida is now 55 years old but is still working in the industry. She’s probably making more investments now to sustain the needs for her medication. Life might be a little bit tough for her, but this did not stop her from pursuing her passion.


Seamus Mullen is a famous chef most popularly known for whipping up exotic recipes. Aside from that, he is no ordinary chef because he had received awards for his excellent cooking skills. Seamus made investments in New York City and London, wherein he owns four restaurants in total. However, this celebrity chef is not a stranger to rheumatoid arthritis. Seamus has been suffering from this disease for quite a long time now. As a chef, he believes that a balanced diet and exercising could minimize the inflammation, but since Seamus is now in advancing age, his RA flare-ups— which hit his right hand, shoulder, left knee, and his hips— continues to rage on.


Sandy Koufax was a former professional baseball left-handed pitcher. His career spanned from the 1950s to the 1960s. Sandy’s career was iconic, making him the youngest player inductee to the Baseball Hall of Fame. However, ex-athletes are usually known to be at risk for arthritis disease, so Sandy was definitely not an exception. He developed traumatic arthritis in his left elbow while he was still in his playing days. Having the illness and also barely feeling anything in his hands didn’t stop Sandy from breaking records. His doctors have been considering to amputate a finger of his. Still, this unstoppable baseball force remained unfazed. He finally retired in his career at the age of 30, and now, he is at the ripe age of 84 years old. Though he has arthritis, he doesn’t have to worry about any kind of money loan to sustain his needs.


Peter Paul Rubens was a Flemish artist, whom people considered to be influential in the Flemish Baroque tradition. His artworks were his investments for him to be known globally. His works mostly include oil sketches. There are numerous history paintings that are inspired by his commissioned works, and these are now highly valued all over the world in art museums.

However, what people did not know about was Peter’s struggles from the background. Peter has developed arthritis in the last 30 years of his life. Nevertheless, he continued to be a great husband to his wife and a loving father to his eight children.


Claire King is a famous soap opera star in London, who also openly shared her journey about having arthritis. Her most prominent roles were in the ITV soap opera Emmerdale. She was 33 years old when she found out about having arthritis, and she was since suffering from this disease. Due to her condition, it became hard for her to work. Since then, she’s been feeling pain in her fingers and her joints, but she continued to pursue work. She made use of investment money to find the right treatments for her disease. She has been living a good life now and doing the activities she likes to do, including riding horses.


People may have been familiar with James Coburn for his roles in the films The Magnificent Seven, Affliction, and Monsters. In 1999, he openly discussed to the public his battle with rheumatoid arthritis for 15 years. He said a supplement cured his disease, but the symptoms bothered him again when he was working in the business. It may be due to the long hours of standing, so he treated it with electromagnetic treatments, MSM supplements, and tissue massage. Unfortunately, James succumbed to heart failure at the age of 74 in 2002. He was listening to music with his grandchildren when he had his heart attack. By then, we hope he had already arranged things with a probate attorney to take care of his possessions since the attack came unforeseen.


Kathleen Turner shot to stardom was when she starred in the hit movies like Romancing The Stones, The War of the Roses, and Jewel of The Nile. She is known for her signature style of having a deep voice. In 1992, she found out she had rheumatoid arthritis after she gave birth to her first child. She used her investment money into partnering with various foundations to raise awareness about RA. Due to the stiffness of her joints that the disease has caused, it was difficult for Kathleen to keep working. Despite this, her determination and courage prevailed. She underwent 12 surgeries to help ease some of her sufferings. She is now in her ’60s and is still active in the industry.


Kristy McPherson is an American professional golfer who won several accolades and earned five major LPGA titles. Little did people know, she already had arthritis at the height of her career. But still, it didn’t stop her from reaching her dreams. Kristy has a rare form of juvenile arthritis, which developed at the age of 12. The symptoms she had were having back pain and feeling itchy all over her body. There was even a point in her life when she was bedridden for almost a year. She had gradually conquered her illness by having the right treatment of medication and lifestyle adjustments. Having proper insurance will surely be beneficial for Kristy.


Michael Kuluva is an American fashion designer who was once a figure skater from the 1980s to 2000s. Michael had a colorful career, which made a massive success in the fashion industry. He did an investment planning and founded his New York fashion week label Tumbler and Tipsy. In a Fashion Week, Michael revealed his battle with having arthritis and spread awareness about the disease through raising funds in searching for the cure of the disease. Despite the difficulties he’s dealing with having RA, Michael is proud of himself for successfully living, thanks to the right treatments and lifestyle adjustments he had done.


Megan Park is a Canadian singer and actress. People recognize her for her prominent role as Grace Bowman in the television series The Secret Life of The American Teenager.  She also did several TV shows and films. Aside from that, the actress slash singer is also a director. Despite having a successful career in the industry, Megan has had rheumatoid arthritis since she was in her teenage years. She’s been battling with it for a long time now, but has managed to deal with it using the right medications and lifestyle adjustments. She is now happily married, and luckily never experienced dealing with a divorce lawyer.


Tatum O’Neal started in the entertainment industry at the age of ten. Her prominent role was for her portrayal of Addie Loggins in the film Paper Moon. Since then, she has been successful in the showbiz. She married John McEnroe, a tennis player, but later sought the help of an attorney for their legal separation. Tatum is now 56 and has been struggling with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. She had openly expressed that she needed a great support system to deal with the pain of her illness daily. With the right medication and lifestyle adjustments it made her feel better dealing with RA.


Edit Piaf is a French singer and a songwriter. She was one of the most famous stars in her time, but at the age of 47, she was gone too soon. Her passing was caused by complications when she was trying to deal with her arthritis pain. Edith was never able to conquer the disease due to the negligence and not having a good healthy lifestyle. She also had liver cancer while also battling with other conditions. She probably had utilized hefty health insurance to aid her in this. Last 2015, her fans had commemorated her contributions to the music industry on her supposed 100th birthday.


Matt Iseman is a comedian, TV host, and actor. Before he became a television personality, he was once a physician. Matt earned his BS degree from Princeton University and had his MD from Columbia University College of Physician and Surgeons. Later, he joined the entertainment world and won a reality game show, The New Celebrity Apprentice, in 2017. Despite the success Matt had as a television personality, Matt is battling rheumatoid arthritis. His RD developed when he was 31 years old in 2002. Due to his disease, he wanted people to be aware of this kind of condition, so he partnered with the Arthritis Foundation while hosting the popular TV show American Ninja Warrior. With proper medication accompanied by yoga and massages, his treatment was successful.


Pierre-Auguste Renoir was a prominent French artist who mastered the impressionist style in the 1800s. His investment in his life’s success was his excellent talent in painting. One of his famous artworks is Luncheon of the Boating Party, which The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C, is currently exhibiting it. Unfortunately, he developed arthritis in 1892. His health condition declined because of the ailment, but this didn’t stop him from painting more artworks, even though he felt excruciating pain in his hands. He used to ask help from someone to strap the paintbrushes to his hands. This just shows how persevered he was an artist, despite all the struggles he encountered to execute the job required.


Terry Bradshaw was a quarterback professional football player for the Pittsburg Steelers from the ’70s to ’80s. Later, he paved his way into the entertainment world. Terry became an actor and a sports analyst of Fox NFL Sunday. Unfortunately, Terry developed arthritis. He is very open about his condition and was a spokesperson for Arthritis Awareness Month, which is sponsored by the American College of Rheumatology. Terry made sure that he invested in the right health insurance to serve him well and treated his disease with a combination of steroids and a healthy lifestyle. It only shows that Terry is enforcing a positive attitude for the awareness of rheumatic disease.


Grace Bannon is famous for her roles on certain episodes of The Middle, Grey’s Anatomy, and Bones. She has been successful in the career path she’s chosen. But behind that success, she was, at the same time, battling with arthritis.

The disease developed when Grace was only 15 years old. Grace’s disease is a rare form of juvenile arthritis, wherein traditional treatments like Enbrel or cortisone didn’t work for her. Instead, she has been taking a biologic drug called Kineret. Despite her condition, she continued to work and had made several investments across different industries, which she may later use.  Indeed, Grace Bannon is not just an artist, but she’s also a very empowered woman, manifested by her resiliency.


Rosalind Russell was a comedian, actress, singer, and screenwriter. She had starred in numerous films and television shows, wherein she may be recognized from her roles in the movies like Auntie Mame, His Girl Friday, and Gipsy. Rosalind was already at the peak of her career, winning the Golden Globe Award five times when rheumatoid arthritis developed. Since then, she has been tirelessly working with USCSF Arthritis Research Center and with several foundations to spread awareness about the disease. Unfortunately, at the age of 69, Rosalind joined our Creator. Although she was gone too soon, she probably had no regrets since she made the right investments in partnering with several foundations.


Lucille Ball’s most prominent role was when she landed a role in the sitcom I Love Lucy. She was an actress and comedian who received numerous accolades. She made a name in the industry even as she was still battling with a disease of rheumatoid arthritis since she was only 17 years old. The condition didn’t become a hindrance to reach her dreams. She was recognized as the “Queen of Comedy” for her performances, and with her success, she didn’t go through any form of loans to sustain her medication since she had accumulated enough wealth. At the age of 77, Lucille passed away— not due to RD, but because of heart complications.


Tiger Woods was one of the most prominent golfers in history. He won a lot of awards in PGA tournaments, proving how great of a golfer he was. Unfortunately, later in his years, he developed arthritis, which plagued his back. It made playing the sport extremely difficult for him. So at the age of 41, his career started to wind down. His arthritis originally developed after he had knee surgery from a torn ACL. From this, he had PRP injections to endure the excruciating pain and swelling in his knee. These injections were supposed to make Tiger feel better and continue to play. Tiger must have the right insurance that had served him well during his healing process.


Shaq is prominently known as one of the greatest players in NBA history, wherein he won a lot of championships alongside his teammates. People regarded him as a big dude for his 7’11” height, feet size of 22, and his weight of 325 pounds. Behind the success of Shaq, he has been battling osteoarthritis for over a decade. The disease affected his toes and knees, which are common symptoms for someone who weighs 325 pounds when he was in his playing days. Despite having the disease, he remained to have an active lifestyle, making investments towards different businesses. His illness gradually became better with a combination of the right medications and therapies.


Kobe Bryant was one of the most prominent players in the history of basketball. He is famously known as “Black Mamba.” He played as the shooting guard for Lakers, wherein his career spanned for two decades. He won several awards for in recognition of him being a great player. Unfortunately, in the 2012 season, he developed arthritis in his knee. Still, he managed to play for a few more years with a combination of injection, therapies, and a new type of surgery. Later, after the 2015-2016 season, Kobe retired due to his physical decline. Just this 2020, he was taken away from us. We hope, however, that his financial advisors are taking care of his finances for his remaining family after his untimely passing.


Phil Mickelson, nicknamed Lefty, is an American professional golfer who won 44 events on the PGA Tour. Phil is battling with arthritis and is very open about his arthritis symptoms. To spread awareness, he became a spokesperson for Enbrel, a popular medication that helps ease the pain. His illness is specifically psoriasis arthritis, which causes him to feel pain in his joints. It is commonly caused by genetics or from the environment around him. Although his doctor had diagnosed him with this illness, Lefty still managed to find a way to pursue playing the game he loves. Nothing can stop Phil from playing since he probably had already prepared the right insurances to cover expenses for medication that will serve him well.


Neve’s role in the Fox television drama series Party Five has gained her international prominence, as well as her role in the horror film Scream.  She is not a stranger to pain since she already had arthritis in her early 20s. She began experiencing it after dancing for years. She has the “snapping hip” syndrome type of arthritis. Even though she’s been enduring the pain for most of her life, she still managed to find a way to keep living. She is now 46 years old but is still active in the entertainment industry. She is probably doing investment planning to enrich her wealth and provide better health medication for herself.


Nicknamed as “Broadway Joe,” Joe Namath is one of the most renowned football players in the 1960s and 1970s. He played as the quarterback for the New York Jets, which proved his greatness in sports. Behind his success, Joe was also battling osteoarthritis since at the age of 23. He has taken the right medications from his doctors and had a healthy lifestyle, which probably helped him a lot to be still active. He is probably doing investment planning on the research funds to propel the advances for the treatment of the disease.


Dorothy Hamill was a prominent figure skater who won the 1976 Olympic Champion and the 1976 World Champion. She was an iconic personality in the sports industry whom many figure skater aspirants look up to the most. In the ’70s, many young women imitated her bowl haircut. It also became the peak of popularity for the style. In her ’60s now, Dorothy is still recognized by many wherever she goes. Aside from this, Dorothy had openly shared her osteoarthritis, sharing how she is overcoming it. Daily, Dorothy would exercise and often skate, which has helped her manage the symptoms of the disease. Dorothy had probably utilized her health insurance already since she went through some medications for her breast cancer, too, in 2008.


Wayne is one of the greatest hockey players of all time. But what most people may not know is that he is also suffering from osteoarthritis. He endured the pain of having this disease for decades. Wayne invested a portion of his investment money into supporting carious arthritis charities. In his playing days, he was renowned as “The Great One,” for which he holds 60 hockey records. He retired from his career in 1999 and is living happily now with his wife and five children away from the spotlight as well as the hustle and bustle of being a sports superstar.


Caitlyn Jenner is a retired Olympic gold-medalist decathlete and now a high-profile television personality. She had her appearance in the reality television show Keeping Up with the Kardashians. Before her transition, Caitlyn was a successful athlete, whose decathlon career spanned for six years and won her several awards. Despite being successful and well-loved in the sports field, Caitlyn underwent failed marriages and had to deal with an attorney thrice. She is now 70 years old and battling with osteoarthritis, which dramatically affects her knees and joints. She is now keeping a healthy lifestyle and the right medication to manage her illness.


Nolan Ryan made a name in sports. He was a famous pitcher and an inductee in the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999. Despite the success, Nolan is enduring pain from osteoarthritis, which he openly shared about to the public. Despite his arthritis pain, he still appears regularly at MLB events. Nolan became a spokesperson for Advil in the early 2000s to spread awareness about the disease and recommended the ibuprofen-based drug used as a treatment for his arm pain. He is now 73 years old, living a comfortable life in a house with an excellent home security system, and managing his illness with the right medication and healthy eating habits.


Debbie Allen made a name as a dancer and as an actress. Her career in the entertainment industry was a success, which she gained prominence for her roles in several films, televisions, and theaters. Debbie is now 70 years old but is still active in the industry. Despite the success, Debbie had been suffering from rheumatoid disease. She was a spokeswoman for the disease to let people be aware of this condition. She invested her investment money in partnership with a popular women’s health group and launched “Living With Arthritis.” Debbie is now taking care of herself more and maintaining the right healthy lifestyle to cope up with her condition.


Hank Aaron is one of the most recognized athletes in sports history. He is best known for being the right fielder baseball player. In 1982, he was a National Baseball Hall of fame inductee. The prestigious title serves as a recognition for his immense contribution to the sports industry. His entire career was a success, and he had no trouble settling and enjoying his retirement in 1976. However, shortly after his retirement, his doctor diagnosed him with osteoarthritis. Later on, Hank began a personal mission in advocating for the disease and made investments to raise awareness for this autoimmune disorder.


Nancy Lopez gained her prominence in the sports field as a professional golfer. Her passion for golf was her investment when she joined LPGA. Nancy had successfully made it through and is now a retired golfer. During her playing days, she had worked tirelessly. Nancy discovered she had arthritis at the age of 30, but this wasn’t a hindrance for her to keep on the track. When she was already 46 years old, the athlete underwent surgery and injections for her chronic knee pain. Before Nancy left the sports area, she managed to win 48 LPGA events. Nancy is now in her ’60s, but still living actively, which her training and keeping herself healthy made it all possible.


Bart Conner was a gymnast who has later been diagnosed with arthritis. His prominence rose in the ’80s when he won at the Olympics in Los Angeles with two gold medals. Bart has been successful in his career and married his fellow gymnast, Nadia Comaneci. When he discovered he has arthritis, he became involved in the treatment for the disease. In 2000, he launched the initiative, BEAT Arthritis, with Pfizer. Together with his wife, they invested their investment money in running a gymnast academy in Oklahoma. They are now both in advancing age, and both are managing their RA symptoms together and treating it with good healthy eating habits and with some medications.

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