The Cold Agglutinin Disease Foundation (CADF) is a 501c(3) non-profit corporation dedicated to the advancement of knowledge about Cold Agglutinin Disease for the medical profession and patients. CADF will assist in and expedite correct diagnosis and care management of cold agglutinin disease (CAD) for those affected by the disease and is committed to creating a healthier life for the CAD community of patients. We are devoted to filling the education gap that exists for those diagnosed and for medical providers; i.e., primary care physicians, hematologists, nurses, and lab technicians.
Cold Agglutinin Disease is a rare type of autoimmune hemolytic anemia in which the body's immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys its own red blood cells. This causes red blood cells to be prematurely destroyed (hemolysis) leading to anemia and other associated signs and symptoms such as extreme fatigue, muscle weakness, trouble breathing, dizziness, rapid heartbeat and pulse, bluish skin and pain, particularly in areas exposed to the cold. CAD patients are more susceptible to blood clots, strokes, and heart issues than the average person. CAD affects both the liver and kidneys, which are having to filter the dead cells. The average age of onset is 58, though there are cases involving much younger and older people. CAD can be caused by lymphoma and cold or flu viruses, but the cause in some cases is unknown. Acquiring a CAD diagnosis is difficult because the disease is very rare and unknown by many physicians.
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Brad, a rescue specialist with the Canadian Coast Guard, was diagnosed with cold agglutinin disease, changing his life in many ways. Learn how Brad manages his symptoms and navigates life with a rare condition.
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