Jennie Garth Opens Up About Daughter's Medical Condition

09/06/2008 at 08:30 AM ET
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Following her exit from Season 5 of Dancing With The Stars, Jennie Garth was looking and feeling great as she enjoyed a rejuvenated career and a happy home life with husband Peter Facinelli and their three daughters Luca Bella, 10, Lola Ray, 5 ½ and Fiona Eve, 23 months. The good times were to be short-lived, however. In quick succession, Jennie’s father died and Lola was stricken with a mysterious illness. "We didn’t know what was wrong with her," the 36-year-old 90210 actress tells People. "I was basically locked in a closet with her for three months."

The family would eventually learn that Lola suffers from Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis (JRA). Like rheumatoid arthritis in adults, JRA is a disease that causes inflamed, swollen joints, making even simple movements painful. JRA differs from adult rheumatoid arthritis, however, in that many children will outgrow the disease after they receive treatment, as was apparently the case for Lola. "We treated her and it’s in remission," Jennie says. "It was tough, but she’s better now."

Source: People

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

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brooke on

How scary, I hope her daughter is ok, but I heard for the most part most kids outgrow that diease and are ok. She is probably mentioning her weight cause a lot of coomments on blogs was that she looked pregnant a few months ago, I remember even here people thinking that. To me she didn’t ever look pregnant, just not as toned. That’s sad her dad passed away, i’m happy to see her on the new 90210 though.

mrs.dr on

As a rheumatologist and mother, my heart goes out to Jennie Garth and her daughter. Hopefully her daughter’s JRA will stay in remission for good. Hang in there, Jennie and Lola!

Bancie1031 on

I’m sad to hear that Jennie’s dad passed away then Lola getting sick. I’m glad they figured out what was causing Lola’s pain and was able to put it in remission and hope that it continues to stay in remission. My heart goes out to Jennie, Peter, Luca, Lola and Fiona along with her extended family.

Jennifer on

I had JRA from the time I was 2 and was not one of the lucky ones. I did not outgrow mine and by the time I was 26 I had had both hips replaced and one shoulder. I am now 30 and have been marked as permanently disbaled since I was 22.

I pray Lola does not ever have to suffer as I have and still do. No child should ever have to be affected by JRA.

Hugs to Jennie and her family and ALL families dealing with JRA.

Carrie Jo on

My cousin had that when we were pretty young. He was lucky that with treatment he did outgrow it, but it’s a pretty tough thing to go through.

ang on

i saw this on E! news yesterday. it’s very sad for any child to have a condition which restricts their life in any way.im glad lola is doing ok at the moment & kudos to you, jennifer.some people think they have it tough then to hear a story like yours,it puts things into perspective.best wishes for the future.

Jillian on

I also was diagnosed with JRA around the age of three. It is a very difficult thing, I was unable to walk, bend my knees or even crawl… much like Jenny said I was trapped in a closet because I was at the point where I was too large to be carried around and was embarassed at the idea of it. Thankfully modern technology and doctors at the Cleveland Clinic were able to put my disease into remission. I had problems as I was growing and adjusting into my “adult” body and I am much shorter (5’0) then I was told my body should be I am blessed to be one of the lucky ones. The is disease that falls under the radar and should have attention brought to it so that way parents may be informed to make the right choices for their children rather than being afraid of an “unknown disease”. I applaud Jenny Garth for bringing such an under the radar topic back into the spotlight and using her thrust back into the spotlight positively.

jamie on

I was diagnosed with JRA at age 6. I am now 33yrs old and fine. It is very tough to go through for a child. Jenny, if you are reading this please make sure you get Lola’s eyes checked. I was diagnosed with Iritis in my eyes from the JRA and if they didnt catch it in time i would have lost my sight. Good luck and stay strong!

Terah on

I am so happy to hear that Lola’s arthritis is in remission. I was diagnosed at 11 and am now 24. I am not in remission, but the side-effects from a drug i had been on for over 10 years became too much. I tapered off and am stil trying to find a way to have improvement without drugs. I see a chiropractor and eat healthier, but I was told my joints no longer had the protection that they did from the medication.

Tracy on

Jennie, I am so glad to hear that your daughter is feeling better. I know what you’re feeling.My 7 year old daughter was diagnosed in February of this year. It is a very scary time, but I belive with the proper medical treatment and prayer we can all get through this.

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