Hi, my name is Steve Dickson, and I live in a new city called Preston, in Lancashire, England.
My first recollections of having this disease were in 1993, shortly after my father's death. I noticed my hands were becoming very cold when I walked into shade, even though it was a warm summer day. My fingers would turn white, then blue, then red before returning to normal. This continued for a few months, and even reaching into a refrigerator would bring on an attack.
I know I am one of the "lucky" ones, because my doctor immediately referred me to a rheumatologist. I was given a skin biopsy and had blood tests taken. I say "lucky" because he diagnosed scleroderma straight away from the results. I know a lot of people who have gone years with the same symptoms, yet are not given a definite diagnosis. This does not help when you are trying to claim disability benefits.
It wasn't long before they noticed lung involvement. I managed to continue working in an office environment for the British Aerospace Industry, but finally took medical retirement in August 2005. I now pursue a couple of favourite hobbies, such as birdwatching and geo-caching.
I volunteered to help with the ISN, because I feel I can contribute a lot in the way of support for anybody with this illness, and especially because being a male, I know I am in the minority as there are a lot fewer men who unfortunately get this illness.
My personal story of living with scleroderma is featured in the book, Voices of Scleroderma Volume 3.
In February 2006, I took on the additional role of being an ISN Assistant News Guide. I prepare the ISN's RSS Newsfeed, which delivers our newsroom headlines to people and websites who have RSS newsreaders, such as the Google personalized homepages.
I retired from doing the ISN's RSS Newsfeed in September 2009, as this function was taken over by our new News subforum, at long last. I really enjoyed my years of service and helping to raise awareness of scleroderma throughout the world.
Stephen Dickson: ISN Autoimmune News Guide. In this new role, I prepare the ISN's Autoimmune News, researching and preparing articles about autoimmune diseases for the ISN Newsroom and website. I am also a Support Specialist for Sclero Forums, and ISN Guide to RSS Newsfeed. Posted 03-21-06.
Stephen Dickson: ISN Assistant News Guide. In this role, I prepare the ISN's RSS Newsfeed, which delivers our ISN newsroom headlines to people and websites who have RSS newsreaders. Posted 02-04-06.
Voices of Scleroderma Volume 3 has just been released, with 100 more new patient and caregiver stories! Contributing professionals include Dr. Marco Matucci-Cerinic and Dr. Irene Miniati (on Systemic Scleroderma), Dr. Fernanda Falcini (on Juvenile Scleroderma), Dr. Tafazzul e-Haque Mahmud, Dr. Laszlo Czirjak (on Scleroderma-Like Disorders), Francisco Castellanos, and Carol Langenfeld. Posted 01-24-06.
Stephen (Steve) Dickson: ISN Support Specialist. Steve has diffuse scleroderma, and lives in Lancashire, England. Sclero Forums provides free online support 24-hours a day to worldwide members. Posted 10-12-05.
Steve D: Diffuse Scleroderma (England) My symptoms started in 1993, when I noticed my fingers would start to get cold even though it was summer and the temperatures were mild…
Reading Voices of Scleroderma Books: Diana Kramer.
Sharing Scleroderma Awareness Bracelets: Deb Martin, Brenda Miller, Vickie Risner.
Thanks to UNITED WAY donors of Central New Mexico and Snohomish County!
Patricia Ann Black: Marilyn Currier, Shelley Ensz, Richard Howitt, Gerald and Pat Ivanejko, Juno Beach Condo Association, Keith and Rosalyn Miller, and Elaine Wible.
Gayle Hedlin: Daniel and Joann Pepper and Nancy Smithberg.
Janet Paulmenn: Anonymous, Mary Jo Austin, Shelley Blaser, Susan Book, Dennis and Pat Clayton, Grace Cunha, Cindy Dorio, Michael and Patricia Donahue, Shelley Ensz, Nancy Falkenhagen, Jo Frowde, Alice Gigl, Margaret Hollywood, Karen Khalaf and Family, Susan Kvarantan, Bradley Lawrence, Jillyan Little, Donna Madge, Michele Maxson, Barry and Judith McCabe, John Moffett, My Tribute Foundation, Joan-Marie Permison, John Roberts, Margaret Roof, Maryellen Ryan, Mayalin and Kiralee Murphy, Nancy Settle-Murphy, and Bruce and Elizabeth Winter.
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