Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Pitcher Strikes Back at Arthritis Battle Earns Recognition as Riley Champion

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Pitcher Strikes Back at Arthritis Battle Earns Recognition as Riley Champion

Article excerpt

Seth Gorman was 12 years old when he was told he would never again play sports. The avid athlete was diagnosed with systemic juvenile arthritis, a chronic, inflammatory disease of the joints and internal organ systems that affects 10 percent of children with arthritis.

"It was a pretty tough thing to hear," Gorman said. "I just walked out of there thinking I am definitely going to play again, no matter what."

The diagnosis came after Gorman was referred to Riley Hospital for Children following an incident where his hands had swollen so that he was unable to write or even fasten his pants.

His mother Tammy Gorman took him to Riley for treatment. She said the doctors thought it might have been a post-strep reactive arthritis.

"They told us if we didn't have any more problems to just leave it at that," Tammy Gorman, a registered nurse at Deaconess Gateway Hospital, said. "About six months later, it hit him."

Crawling to the bathroom with fever reaching 105 degrees, the juvenile arthritis had worsened so that he could not walk. At that point, Tammy Gorman and her husband, Tracy, shuttled their son from home to Riley, where they spent a month working with doctor Suzanne Bowyer to diagnose his ailment.

"When we found out what it was, we went to Google trying to find a person who had this disease and was able to keep doing what they loved," Tammy Gorman said. "Unfortunately, all we found were people talking about how they had to quit playing."

Bowyer began testing medications to find one that would respond to Seth Gorman's body. After months of experimenting, a "miracle drug" was found.

"(Juvenile arthritis) is a very personalized illness," Tammy Gorman said. "We're just so thankful we had the faith that the doctors would find his miracle drug, and they did."

The drug, Kinert, is a self-administered daily injection. …

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