March, 2015: Fibromuscular Dysplasia Month

WHEREAS, Fibromuscular dysplasia (FMD) is a disease that causes abnormal cell growth of the arterial wall. FMD can lead to areas of narrowing (stenosis), beading, aneurysms, and dissections (tears) of the arterial wall; and,

WHEREAS, Until recently there has been very little progress in understanding the disease since it was first diagnosed in 1938. There is no known cause or cure for the disease and there are no set protocols to treat the disease; and,

WHEREAS, FMD has always been considered and is still classified a rare disease. Many researchers now believe FMD is an under-diagnosed disease. Some of the data suggest that 4-5% of the population may be affected by the disease; and,

WHEREAS, Ninety percent of the patients affected by FMD are women, but men and children also get the disease. There are different classifications of FMD, the two most common types are medial fibroplasia and intimal fibroplasia. Unlike the adult population, children tend to be diagnosed with intimal fibroplasia, which can be more aggressive. There is no understanding of why there are differences; and,

WHEREAS, Individuals and families affected by fibromuscular dysplasia often experience problems such as a sense of isolation, difficulty in obtaining accurate and timely diagnosis, and optimal treatment options; and,

WHEREAS, Many rare diseases are relatively well-known, but is not well-known by the public or medical community. Patients and their families must bear a large share of the burden for things such as educating others, including their own physicians, and raising funds for awareness and research; and,

WHEREAS, The Fibromuscular Dysplasia Society of America (FMDSA) was founded in March 2003. Over the past twelve years, this association has been active and successful with many programs including public and physician awareness, patient support, and engaging and working with researchers from around the world; and,

WHEREAS, FMDSA is funding the United States Registry for Fibromuscular Dysplasia. Until the recent data was released, it was thought was that 75% of FMD cases affected the renal arteries, but that is now known to be inaccurate. It is also very common to have a 5 year delay from onset of symptoms to diagnosis; and,

WHEREAS, There is still much needed awareness and research of the disease. FMD patients present with the same symptoms that much of the general population is affected with, such as hypertension, headaches, and dizziness. Others present with TIA or stroke, dissection (tear) of an artery, aneurysm, swooshing noise in the ear, and renal infarction. Children can present with basic symptoms such as high blood pressure, headaches, insomnia, fatigue, and abdominal pain. Misdiagnoses of FMD can lead to severe consequences and disability; and,

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Rick Snyder, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim March 2015 as Fibromuscular Dysplasia Month in Michigan.