If I would need to choose I would go with - AUTOIMMUNE SYSTEM DISORDER - ASD like that? :)
I talk to one girl from my department as she was the most concerned about me and I started to tell her what is wrong with me, that I have some chronic desease and sometimes I am in the horrible pain and my doc is trying to find the best meds for me. Her first question was - "is it like arthritis pain?" I was so supprised as she is 24, I didn't expect this. So I said - it is actually polyarthritis, multiple joints are involved. She said that she has friend with arthritis, she is 26 and she talked with her a lot about it. That was one of the best responses I had so far, as she knew actually a little about the desease and how hard it can be. I mean at least she had an idea, so I felt much better after throwing this out from myself to finaly someone from my colleagues:)
Main thing with people reactions to RA or other deseases is their knowledge, we can explain a lot, they will never feel it, but at least they could listen and read something about desease before they say something stupid!
Polyarthritis - diagnosed July 2010, suffering from May 2009
Prednisone - 5mg/day, Plaquenil, Vitamin D, Fish Oil, Isoniazid - getting me ready for Humira, also Prednisone shots ocasionally.
Pain - off and on