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Amyloidosis Support Group, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Medical Disciplines Research

Mission: Face to face support and a helpful voice to guide people with this rare disease, with education and awareness of resources and treatment centers.

Target demographics: support, educate and empower patients and care givers of amyloidosis

Programs: Face to Face Support Groups, On LIne Support Groups, 24 Hour Hor/Help Line Toll Free

Community Stories

48 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 4

On January 18, 2013, my life changed. I suffered a stroke while eating dinner with my husband of 8 months. While at the hospital they questioned him of my family history, he turned to my sister Ellen Cameron for help. Ellen told the doctors that she had Amyloidosis and our mother and sister had passed away So I was immediately tested and confirmed to also having amyloidosis. My sister, probably had Muriel on speed dial during that time. emails were provided to both me and my husband for support groups in our area and we were put on the mailing list for the big meeting in October. We read several of the articles Muriel sent and worked with the team at University of Maryland and had my Liver Transplant October 2014. I wasn't able to attend the last meeting due to my husbands work schedule. But I participate in every study that is brought to me. And will continue to do so. I read all the emails and keep up with the articles and quiz my doctors on any new information. I have met Muriel and she is a one woman dynamo... she makes you feel very special, and she listens... as if she has nothing to do. Muriels department heads or staff are all helpful, supportive, understanding. Eager to hear your story, and comforting.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Support Group meeting attendees get educational and emotional support. They learn about the disease in plain, easy to understand language from doctors who specialize in Amyloidosis. Newly diagnosed attendees can ask questions and learn from those of us who have gone through various treatments that you can live a "normal" life. Every meeting reviews current and upcoming treatments as well as clinical trials. Additionally information about financial assistance is often discussed. These meetings are a must for anyone diagnosed with this insidious disease.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Muriel Finkel was so exceptionally helpful when I called her 3 years ago when my husband was diagnosed with Amyloidosis. I was having trouble convincing him to get another opinion, and her advice helped greatly. I have been in touch with her since then and she is always gracious and caring with her advice.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

they are extremely helpful and supportive no matter what kind of amyloidosis you have. Muriel and Paula are the very best of people:) would like to see if they ever get Dr. Gertz to come to a Mid-Atlantic meeting maybe Dr. Skinner

Client Served

Rating: 5

This organization is the best! When my husband was diagnosed with AMY, I was heading in 48 hours for a 6 week assignment overseas and needed answers quickly. I reached out to this organization and received a call back within 30 minutes. I knew where to go for treatment and evaluation and my husband, more importantly, was able to go to a support group in Boston before he ever started treatment. This group was extremely helpful and all of the support meetings are educational. It has meant a lot to us and I credit the care and support from BMC/Amyloidosis doctors and professional staff with his great survival. He has a vibrant and active life.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Muriel: First let me tell you how thankful we are to have you and your team supporting the patient community. Many praises for your efforts; you are second to none!
Now to my suggestion. The patient community needs an assigned member from your staff to help patients source and obtain charitable funding. I believe that there are numerous charities willing to provide grants to patients beyond the two charities that are typically recommended. This effort will not be easy. It will require someone with the ability to network well and the diligence to pursue this objective and not give up. Amyloidosis is typically a non-supported disease when it comes to charitable funding. Herein is the objective; create a list of 10-15 charities ( known to support Amyloidosis ) that can be provided to patients who are in need so they may apply for charitable funding.
My sincere thanks to you and your team!
BD

Client Served

Rating: 5

My diagnosis and treatment with light chain amyloidosis was accompanied by fear. I had wonderful treatment by gifted clinicians. They were not afraid but I was! I attended my first support group two months after having my STC, nine months after diagnosis. Had I known how much information, companionship and hope I would get from the meetings, I'd have traveled far to get to one sooner. Each story I hear, each presenter I hear give me courage and hope. I am 28 mo post STC. My course has not been perfectly smooth but I am feeling strong and hopeful. Thank you Muriel and Amyloidosis Support for all your assistance!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have amyloidosis, a very rare condition. I developed it as a result of having an incurable blood cancer. It is one of a number of types of amyloidosis which can be fatal. Many people are not diagnosed until they have end stage disease because it is so rare and can present with such a variety of symptoms. Muriel Finkel, who oversees the Amyloidosis Support Group, Inc., runs an amazing not-for-profit which assists people with all kinds of amyloidosis. She responds immediately to requests for assistance, be it finding a doctor who is an expert treating people with the disease, or referring patients to the latest research articles and drug studies, or providing other kinds of support. In addition, she organizes meetings in various cities in the United States and invites leading physicians to speak at the meetings and help patients figure out how to get the best care available. Since Muriel is so knowledgable and dedicated to the cause, doctors have been willing to donate their time to this group of patients, many of whom are coping with the most serious aspects of the disease which may require a stem cell transplant, and/or a heart or kidney transplant. Amyloidosis is an orphan disease. There are no statistically significant studies or huge organizations to assist patients and caregivers navigate their way. Muriel Finkel and Amyloidosis Support Group, Inc, does a phenomenal job in helping patients and their families cope with this devastating illness.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Can't say enough about the Amyloidosis Support Group. This is a disease few people are aware of, and we were lucky enough to find Muriel Finkel and the Amyloidosis Support Group. Fortunately, our internet search brought us to this group, and thankfully, we were in great hands! It is very lonely and scary to be diagnosed with a disease so few (including doctors!) know much about and this group has been for many - literally - a life saver.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with Amyloidosis [which is a very rare form of cancer that can attack any or all of your organs and available spaces] in 2013 as the result of a annual health checkup. It was a very lonely feeling because while the clinic where I was diagnosed did know something about it they did not have any patient experience with this. After I moved my treatment to MD Anderson Cancer Center I continued my habitual Internet browsing and became aware of this group and that it held meetings in Dallas, TX. I went to a meeting and found a) others with similar problems, b) a printed piece of literature about this, and c) most importantly other folks who just wanted to make sure that it is not "JUST ME!".

Be assured that it is not "just me" and that there is medical research progress has resulted in new drugs and so, "Help is on the way!" and it is discussed at each and every meeting you will attend.

There will be meetings of this group in Houston at MD Anderson Hospital's conference center starting September 2016.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with Amyloidosis in 2010 and immediately looked on the Internet for information - what a mistake! The first sight I found said I had 6-12 months to live; needless to say I was devastated. It wasn't until I found AMS and Muriel Finkel that I received correct information, the knowledge of wonderful doctors and the MayoClinic: in other words, hope. This group offers a place to read the correct and the latest information on Amyloidosis, to relate to others with the disease through attending meetings with knowledgable doctors or through an on line forum, to ask hard questions and get honest answers and to feel at ease knowing that we all going through the the same things. A wonderful group!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

My brother is still walking and not in a wheelchair as well as a much better quality of life as a direct result of the assistance from Muriel Finkel of ASG. She works with hundreds of people and yet remembers us all and she remembered by brother after one meeting he attended. Thanks also go to Kay Rowley the ASG NW representative that got him to his first meeting. My brother is in a trial for ATTR and is now in the second phase. I go to all the meetings in the Northwest that are held in Seattle and Portland. Doctors from clinics and research facilities all over the US have taken the time and effort to come to us, via the ASG. It is hard to say no to Muriel! Thank God! Most of my family carry the mutation and our generation would not have had a chance without this organization: that gets people to the right doctors, gives info about drug trials, and keeps us abreast of new research and treatments globally. Their website is well set up and easy to follow. You get personal attention. Thanks to all who volunteer!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Shortly after my sister was diagnosed with familial Amyloidosis, I immersed myself in researching about it and stumbled upon this group. From the get-go, Muriel and Kay have been of invaluable help with their deep knowledge, compassion and responsiveness. Meetings and emails are packed with useful information and opportunities to connect with others on this journey. They deserve high marks, and our family's gratitude.

Client Served

Rating: 5

If it wasn't for this group, my family would not have made the contact with the doctors we needed to find relief for our symptoms. Our family has a very rare form of hereditary amyloidosis. After attending the Chicago meeting in 2013, we came away with far more information than we anticipated. This put us on a path for getting the help we needed. And, we have been glad to pass along any new information we learn through the support group.

1 Judy158

Client Served

Rating: 5

I attended my first support mtg in Chicago last week end; it was excellent & very informative. Plenty of time with doctors for questions & everyone was so nice! Reading materials good too! A sincere thank you for all involved & the support.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter (who has amyloidosis) and I attended our third support meeting in Woodale, IL and again found it very helpful and informative. This was the first with Dr. Gerts from Mayo and the second with Dr. Abonour from Indiana. Both answered all the questions we had, both during the presentation/question session and one-on-one with Dr.Abonour. Since we are both more familiar with this disease and its problems, we were able to absorb more info. As usual Muriel Finkel did a top-notch job facilitating the meeting. Thank you, Muriel. This is a superb way to be able to hear other peoples' experiences and learn all the latest from the experts. Looking forward to the next meeting in June. People and caregivers please avail yourselves of the opportunity of attending, if you are able, as you will learn more than you will by just reading about this disease and can get answers from the experts in this rare disease. Thank you again for having these support meetings.

6

Client Served

Rating: 5

I would describe the Amyloidosis Support Group, Inc. as a GPS thru a terrible neighborhood on a stormy night and you have no idea where you need to go. The information about this disease has been limited and dated on the internet. My Doctors studied 15 minutes on the chapter called Amyloidosis. I have 20 minute office visits with my Doctors for questions and treatment plans. If I didn't have this support group to go too for answers and directions I don't know what I would have done. Questions don't come from 9-5, they come at 2 in the morning when you can't sleep and you are scared, but somehow, someone is on the end of a keyboard to answer, support and guide you thru some scary thoughts, ideas and road bumps ahead. Now you go back to sleep only to wonder if the treatment you are receiving is the best and what are these side effects I keep having. Again, at the end of a keyboard someone is waiting to tell you; "to be strong it gets easier", "I've had that side effect it will go away" or "call your Doc that doesn't make any sense". Guidance and direction when you need it most. I cannot thank them enough and they will never know how much they have lifted me up. Sometimes I just read what others are going thru and know that I am not alone. Sometimes I share and hope and pray it makes them feel better in their battle, but either way I am stronger and better educated for having joined this group.
Thank you to Amyloidosis Support Group, Inc. for all that you do!
Sincerely,
Karen Harris

7

Client Served

Rating: 5

Muriel Finkel of the Amyloidosis support group was the only person that understood my illness. She recommended that I visit the Mayo Clinic as no one in the medical field in Colorado Springs could figure out what my illness was, let alone how to help me. I've been given access to many doctors as the support group visits my area twice a year. I can not say enough for the personnel support and guidance I get from Muriel. I've never met anyone that treat each of the hundreds of Amyloidosis patients as if we are the her best friend. She just has the Biggest Heart. I am blessed to have her.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

In 2007 right after my husband was diagnosed with AL Amyloidosis I somehow found Muriel Finkle, founder and head of the Amyloidosis Support Group (ASG). Muriel had THE answer we needed, steering us to Dr. David Seldin at the Boston University Amyloidosis Medical Center who saved my husband's life with a Stem Cell Transplant in 2008 (he's still in Complete Response).
ASG is a fount of knowledge and support----Highly Recommended.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

This support group been a great wealth of current and accurate information associated with Amyloidosis. With the knowledge and support that is being transmitted through this network, it has helped tremendously in increasing what questions to ask and a better understand of this awful disorder. The information passed along is indispensable. The support group meetings that I have attended are well worth the time and effort. Have to do a shout out to Elinda and Michael for their efforts for the Philadelphia support group meetings.

Keep up the good work Muriel!!!!!!!! Kudos to your leadership.

Thank you so much,
Mickey Wherry