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Read about the positive impact the Scleroderma Program has had on one patient's experience.

Sheri Hicks's Story

U-M Scleroderma Program, Sheri Hicks & Dr. Khanna
Dr. Dinesh Khanna and Sheri Hicks

While Sheri Hicks was living in Tucson, Arizona, and tending to her 1-year-old son, she began to notice painful ulcers on her fingertips. As the ulcers persisted, they became unbearable. Little did Sheri know, it would be another long and painful year before she got any answers.

In 2007, doctors were finally able to link Sheri’s painful swollen fingers to scleroderma, a chronic connective tissue disease that hardens the skin. It began to affect every part of Sheri’s life.

After reaching a point of exhaustion, Sheri and her husband relocated to Michigan, uniting her with supportive family and friends. Today, she is being treated by physicians in the Michigan Medicine Scleroderma Program, directed by Dinesh Khanna, MD, MSc, in the Department of Internal Medicine. It is here Sheri found a reason to believe in a cure. As one of the top treatment facilities in the country, the team in Khanna’s scleroderma research lab has discovered a compound that could provide an effective new treatment. However, more funding and research is needed to make this treatment a reality. Learning of the potential for a cure motivated Sheri to start fundraising for research. However, due to her condition, fundraising is not always an easy task.

Yet, Sheri won’t let her condition slow her down. As doctors are on the brink of a breakthrough for scleroderma, Sheri promises she will not stop fighting for a cure through her fundraising efforts.

“When you feel passionate about something, you have to just jump in. You have to start somewhere and just do it. You have to stay positive and focus on exactly what you want.”


If you're considering making a donation to the University of Michigan Scleroderma Program, we would like to thank you.

Scleroderma is an extremely challenging disease. We don’t yet know its cause and we’re just beginning to unravel its natural history. Survival is improving through incremental advances in the medical support of specific complications. We believe that the person with scleroderma deserves nothing but the best in care, support, and quality of research.

In our clinics, we fight scleroderma one patient at a time. Development of a laboratory-based scleroderma research program will allow us to potentially help millions. Individuals who have the vision and willingness to contribute to our research program will allow us to attain the overarching goal of the Scleroderma Program: to develop effective treatments for scleroderma and to strive for nothing short of a cure.

Donors are an important element in helping us find a cure. If you choose to make a gift, we thank you. We promise that we will utilize these funds in a judicious and focused elevation of the pace and quality of our research. Your gift to our Program will make a profound difference in the conquest of scleroderma.

How to Donate

To make a gift, please visit the University of Michigan Scleroderma Cure Fund online giving page.


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