Greg Cohen

KNX Hero of the Week
Wednesday, June 5th
A popular fitness instructor from Studio City is now an advocate for people around the world, after getting diagnosed with a rare, autoimmune disease.

Here's the KNX Hero of the Week: 

Scleroderma affects about 300,000 people in the United States.  That's about one in every 1,000. 

Greg Cohen was diagnosed with scleroderma in 2017. 

"I had previously been diagnosed with bilateral carpal tunnel syndrome, about two years earlier or so," Greg says.

“Sclero” means “hard” and “derma” means “skin”. ​

The fitness coach tells me the exact cause of scleroderma is unknown, and most people struggle with the skin and tissue tightening disease for several years before a diagnosis is confirmed. 

"Your body basically deposits collagen in all different places," says Greg. "For a lot of people, it affects their hands, their face, their feet." 

It can also impact internal organs, and be life-threatening. 

Currently, there is no cure for scleroderma.

Women are three to four times more likely than men to develop Scleroderma.  When the diagnosis was delivered by Greg's rheumatologist, it came as a shock to him and his wife Arielle, who is also in wellness industry.  

"I knew nothing about it," says Greg. " I basically broke down crying to my wife Arielle.  After feeling sorry for myself for about a week, I kind of mustered-up and began to see it as a blessing, as a way to help other people."

And that's what Greg has now dedicated his life to do.

​"My goal is to motivate and inspire people to remain active.  Because the less active they are, the worse their symptoms with the illness are."

Greg recently finished his second Los Angeles Marathon, running both after getting his diagnosis. 

 He tells me he hopes to take part in other marathons around the US to raise and spread awareness.  

In fact, June is Scleroderma Awareness Month.

We are proud to name Greg Cohen as the KNX Hero of the Week!

KNX Heroes presented by California Resources Corporation... saluting our military veterans, and all of our heroes! 

Heather Jordan, KNX 1070 News Radio.