May 29, 2012


Stephen I. Katz, M.D., Ph.D.

Letter From Dr. Stephen I. Katz: NIAMS Expands Multicultural Outreach Efforts

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce that four organizations have been selected to field test the distribution of health planners as part of the NIAMS National Multicultural Outreach Initiative, in preparation for an anticipated national distribution in 2013. Read more.

Image: Stephen I. Katz, M.D., Ph.D.

Photo: Nicole Plass, B.S.N., M.P.A.

A Conversation With NIAMS Research Nurse Specialist Nicole Plass, B.S.N., M.P.A.

Nicole Plass, B.S.N., M.P.A. is a pediatric research nurse specialist in the Intramural Research Program at the NIAMS. Plass has been working at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center for eight years, seven of those with the NIAMS. In her interview, Plass discusses her interests in science and research, what influenced her to become a pediatric nurse, offers helpful advice about science and research careers for minorities and describes her best experiences as a nurse at the NIH.

Image: Nicole Plass, B.S.N., M.P.A.


NIAMS Director Discusses Gout and Dermatitis

NIAMS Director Stephen I. Katz, M.D., Ph.D., was featured in an article on gout in the Winter 2012 issue of MedlinePlus magazine. Gout is one of the most painful forms of arthritis. It occurs when too much uric acid builds up in the body.

Dr. Katz also was quoted in the April 2012 issue of NIH News in Health in a feature article about rashes—why they happen and what to do about them.

The 7th Annual Pain Consortium Symposium on Advances in Pain Research

Advancing Pain Therapies
May 29 and 30, 2012
For further information and registration, visit the NIH Pain Consortium website.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Workshop

Assessment of Analgesic Treatment of Chronic Pain—A Scientific Workshop
May 30 and 31, 2012
For further information and registration, visit the FDA News & Events webpage.
This event will be held on the NIH Campus in Bethesda, Maryland, and are open to the public. Registration is free.

This event will be available via videocast. Viewers can watch the live or archived video online.

Save the Date: NIAMS Advisory Council Meeting

The next NIAMS Advisory Council Meeting will be held June 5, 2012, in Building 31, 6th floor, C Wing, Conference Room 6, NIH Campus.

Save the Date: Summit on the Science of Eliminating Health Disparities

Integrating Science, Policy and Practice: Building a Healthier Society
October 31–November 3, 2012
Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center
National Harbor, Maryland
For more information, visit the Summit on the Science of Eliminating Health Disparities webpage.


NIAMS Tweets!

The NIAMS launched NIH_NIAMS on Twitter, the popular microblogging site, as a companion to the Institute’s website. The NIAMS will use its presence on Twitter to announce new publications, stories, resources, research advances and other news of the Institute in both English and Spanish.

NIAMS Establishes New Facebook Page

The NIAMS has launched its new page on Facebook, the popular social media site, as a companion to the Institute’s website and Twitter feed. The NIAMS will use its presence on Facebook to feature health information publications, news stories, resources, research advances and other news from the Institute.

National Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month

May is National Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month. The NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases ~ National Resource Center offers publications in Chinese. Browse our current list of Chinese-language publications.

We also offer audio publications in Chinese.

The following national health observances also take place in May. Check the NIAMS publications catalog for these and other resources related to the featured conditions.

Living with Arthritis

  • Arthritis Awareness Month
    Many people start to feel pain and stiffness in their bodies over time. These people may have arthritis. This resource contains general information about arthritis. It describes what arthritis is, different forms of arthritis, its causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment.
  • Fibromyalgia Awareness Day (May 12)
    Fibromyalgia syndrome is a common and chronic disorder characterized by widespread pain, diffuse tenderness and a number of other symptoms. This resource contains general information about fibromyalgia. It describes what fibromyalgia is, its causes and treatment options.
  • Lupus Awareness Month
    Lupus is one of many disorders of the immune system known as autoimmune diseases. Lupus is characterized by periods of illness, called flares, and periods of wellness, or remission. This resource contains general information about systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE or “lupus”). It describes the different types of lupus and explains what causes the disease.
  • Physical Fitness and Sports Month
    In recent years, increasing numbers of people of all ages have been heeding their health professionals' advice to get active to reap the health benefits exercise offers. But for some people—particularly those who overdo or who don’t properly train or warm up—these benefits can come at a price: sports injuries. This resource describes the different types of sports injuries, how they can be treated and prevented, and recent treatment advances from research.

NIH Launches New Clinical Trials Website

The NIH has created a new website, NIH Clinical Research Trials and You, to help people learn more about clinical trials, why they matter and how to participate. Clinical trials look at new ways to prevent, detect or treat disease. The goal of clinical trials is to determine if a new test or treatment works and is safe.

NIH News in Health

Read practical health information in NIH News in Health, which is reviewed by the NIH’s medical experts and is based on research conducted either by the scientists on the NIH campus or by its grantees at universities and medical schools around the country. A recent issue featured stories about chronic painbone density tests to screen for osteoporosis in women, and Sjögren’s syndrome.

New Tip Sheets on Exercise

The National Institute on Aging has added the following new topics to its Go4Life website: Is Now in Spanish! is the first federal website to offer one-stop shopping for vaccine and immunization information. The Spanish-language version of the site offers clear information about vaccines and the diseases they prevent, the latest vaccine recommendations, easy-to-read immunization schedules, tools on where to find affordable vaccines and tips on travel immunizations and staying healthy abroad.

Search OMH Library Catalog Online

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Minority Health (OMH) has launched a new online catalog search tool. Now you can find books, reports, journals, media, articles and organizations related to the health status of racial and ethnic minority populations.

AHRQ Releases New Resources for Comparing Osteoarthritis Pain Medications

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has released new clinician summariescontinuing education activities, and a slide set that expand on a recent update to a research report comparing the effectiveness and safety of analgesics in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Overall, no clear differences in effectiveness of different non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) were found, but there were potentially important differences in the risk of serious harms, the report found. The update, Analgesics for Osteoarthritis: An Update of the 2006 Comparative Effectiveness Review, includes new research that better addresses the comparative effectiveness and safety of oral and topical medications.

AHRQ Creates Facebook Page To Help Hispanics “Take the Reins” of Their Health Care

The AHRQ has a new Facebook page that connects visitors to its Effective Health Care Program’s growing library of Spanish-language resources. The Facebook page features health information videos and links to publications that explore treatment options for conditions ranging from cancer to diabetes to depression. It was launched as part of the AHRQ’s Toma las riendas (“Take the reins”) campaign that encourages Hispanics to take control of their health care by exploring their treatment options. Is Now on Facebook, the go-to website for information and tools for staying healthy, has launched its own Facebook page, Be Healthy Your Way.


Did you know that in the United States, more than 40 million people either already have osteoporosis or are at high risk due to low bone mass? Osteoporosis is a disease in which the bones become weak and are more likely to break. It can occur in both men and women and at any age, but it is most common in older women.

Use our free, interactive osteoporosis tool to identify the most common red flags that put your bones at risk.


The NIAMS Exhibit

The NIAMS exhibit will be traveling to several events in 2015. See the schedule of health fairs and exhibits.

The NIAMS can provide health information or staff to help make your community event or health fair successful. Please contact Sara Rosario Wilson by email,,for more information.

Image: the NIAMS Exhibit

Last Reviewed: 05/29/2012