Rare Disease Day is a day to raise awareness of the 7,000+ rare diseases that affect over 300 million people globally. Myocarditis, Giant Cell Myocarditis, and Pericarditis are all classified as rare diseases. A rare disease in the United States, is one that has less than 200,000 cases diagnosed a year, or around 1 in every 1,500 Americans. The National Institute of Health estimates that 25-30 million Americans are living with a rare disease. The difficulty in diagnosing, tracking, and defining a rare disease makes calculating the exact number difficult.
The Zebra is the symbol of rare diseases. Just because you hear what sounds like hoof prints doesn’t mean that it is a horse, it could be a zebra!
This is where the Myocarditis Foundation is headed when we say to ask, “Could this be Myocarditis?” Just because there are viruses going around, that doesn’t mean that that is what you have when you are still sick with the symptoms even when everyone else in your family is better from it…it could be a zebra, such as myocarditis!
Doctors today are more aware of the prevalence and burden of rare diseases. Awareness of rare diseases is growing as well.
Rare Disease Day is celebrated on the last day of February each year. Patients and groups across the world join together to raise awareness about rare diseases with in-person events, social media campaigns, and more.
Even though there are more than 7,000 different rare diseases, and the individual ways that they impact families are different, there are many shared challenges. We have a lot of common ground…” Alone we are rare, together we are strong.”
Help us raise awareness of rare diseases by wearing your zebra stripes on Tuesday February 28th, 2023, and share your rare disease story with others.