Joan Young was diagnosed with ITP in 1992. After failing all the usual medical treatments available at the time and suffering from numerous side effects from the medications, both Joan and her doctors thought she might not live. Joan decided to try the alternative treatments and lifestyle changes she’d read about in the hopes of improving her health. Working with other healthcare professionals, Joan slowly recovered from her ITP. Since 1993 she has been off all medications and has normal platelet counts.
Joan had her life back. She could have walked away when she went into remission and put her frightening ordeal with ITP behind her. But frustrated by the lack of information and support available for others afflicted with this disease, Joan created the website itppeople.com. Soon, people from all over the world found the website, shared their trials and successes, and learned of many options that could help them heal. The response to the website prompted Joan to create the Platelet Disorder Support Association or www.pdsa.org.
Since she founded PDSA, Joan has worked tirelessly on behalf of those individuals and families affected by ITP. She personally answered thousands of phone calls and emails from people desperate for information, all along offering them hope and inspiration. Joan collaborated with top hematologists, researchers and pharmaceutical companies,working diligently to find new approaches to treating ITP. Although she retired as President of PDSA in 2008, she continues to assist the organization. She will always be grateful for the many lessons learned though her ITP journey.