Lene Andersen, MSW

Patient Advocate

Lene Andersen is an author, health and disability advocate, and photographer living in Toronto. Lene (pronounced Lena) has lived with rheumatoid arthritis since she was four years old and uses her experience to help others with chronic illness. She has written several books, including Your Life with Rheumatoid Arthritis: Tools for Managing Treatment, Side Effects and Pain, and 7 Facets: A Meditation on Pain, as well as the award-winning blog, The Seated View.

Lene serves on HealthCentral's Health Advocates Advisory Board, and is a Social Ambassador for the RAHealthCentral on Facebook page, She is also one of HealthCentral's Live Bold, Live Now heroes — watch her incredible journey of living with RA.

Latest by Lene Andersen, MSW

inner superhero

Get Motivated to Do Just About Anything (With RA or Not)

The pandemic rages on, and life is still far from normal. If you're struggling to rev back up, this advice will help.

managing chronic illness

Living Well With Chronic Illness Is a Full-Time Job

Lene Andersen breaks down the hidden work of living with rheumatoid arthritis, including hours spent on the phone with insurance companies and time spent poring over the latest research about her disease.

working from home

You Can Run a Small Business With RA

It's not easy (what biz is?!), but the reward is building a career that works around your rheumatoid arthritis symptoms.

Mother's Day pain

How Someone Who Can't Have Children Feels About Mother's Day

It hurts, but it helps to hold fast to the children in my life who love me like another mom.

in pain

Dear Loved Ones: This Is What RA Feels Like

Rheumatoid arthritis is more than painful joints. Here’s how it can change your life and why support is so necessary.


My Name is Lene, and I'm at High Risk for COVID-19

My rheumatoid arthritis puts me in danger of developing serious complications from COVID-19. It’s a really scary place to be.

young people hiking

Let's Commit to More Kindness in the RA Community

We all benefit when we lift each other up and avoid comparing our own RA experiences with someone else's.

pensive woman looking out window
Living With

What Accepting Your RA Really Means

Truly coming to terms with a chronic diagnosis like rheumatoid arthritis isn't something that happens only once. It's something you'll do over and over again.

black and white photo of person in bed with legs sticking straight up
Living With

Good Morning, Stiff Joints! Let’s Have a Better Day

A good night’s sleep is great for your RA, but that long period of inactivity can mean waking with stiff, sluggish-to-move joints. Try these tricks for easing morning stiffness, giving you a jump start to your day.

neon sign reading DO SOMETHING GREAT
Living With

Failure-Proof Your Goals

Setting three tiny personal goals each month—instead of one huge one for the entire year—allows room for setbacks and restarts that keep you moving forward.