The EPIC Foundation

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Invisible Illness

Invisible Illness: What are they? Who is Affected? How Can I Become More Aware?

Alicia M. Held, MSW

Maybe you have read the term “invisible illness” on a friend’s Facebook feed, or have recently read an article raising awareness for those who are marginalized because they do not have a “readily visible” disability; but what really is an “invisible” illness or disability? Let’s start with the definition of disability …

What is The EPIC Foundation

The EPIC Foundation is a 501C3 non-profit organization that provides support, advocacy, education and tools to those affected by chronic illnesses. The foundation staff, which includes trained psychologists, provides various resources to support patients living with chronic illnesses and their caregivers.

The EPIC Foundation uniquely embraces the mind, body, and spirit, by focusing on key human issues such as trauma and loss. These are the vital issues that are commonly ignored while treating chronic illnesses.

Mission Statement

Mission Statement: Empowering People with Invisible Chronic Illness (EPIC) Foundation is a nonprofit organization that seeks to empower those living with chronic illness. EPIC offers support, advocacy, and tools for coping to those living with chronic illness and their loved ones and caregivers, with a particular focus on Cushing’s Syndrome and related illnesses.

Suggestions or comments can be e mailed to The EPIC Foundation at


Details about our first annual EPIC convention can be found under “Promotions/Exciting News” at the top of the page.

Featured Key Note speaker, Teresa Tapp of T-Tapp, Inc. You can do it! #YesYouCan

Chronic Illness

Chronic Illness Versus Normal Illness Dyer (1990) compares the process of “normal” and…

The Five Loss Stages

The Five Stages of Loss dealing with a major change in your life is

Chronic Illness and Trauma

I want to validate that living through chronic illness can be quite traumatic.

A Message from the Executive Director about Grief and Mourning

I want to validate that living through chronic illness can be quite traumatic.

The Cushie Anthem

The Cushie Anthem

By Crystal M Tidwell…

Medical Zebra

“Zebra” is a term that is used to describe a surprising diagnosis…

Person of the Month

“Craig S. Thames”

We just celebrated Valentine’s Day during the month of February, a time when we express love! As we think about the ones we love, I want to honor a very special person in MY life! I give thanks for and honor my soul mate, my best friend, and husband…

Help and Advocacy

For a list of trusted experts who are physicians and surgeons, please contact the EPIC Foundation at

Why we are EPIC together

The EPIC Foundation strongly believes in community, which has helped so many of us survive the unimaginable! EPIC Foundation is here to support YOU! We understand that through unity and by working together, we create and maintain a level of connectedness that empowers us! We are empowered TOGETHER!!!

Rules of Empowerment

Sometimes when we are chronically ill, it can feel very powerless. That sense of loss can be so overwhelming that we feel that we have no power at all. Being empowered is having a strong sense of self and maintaining a sense of self no matter the circumstances…

Find Hope

List of Therapists

Find Help

Doctors Who Can Help

Find An Advocate

Support and Advocacy for YOU
This is Dr. Karen’s interview with Cushing’s advocate and beloved pioneer, Mary Kelly O’Connor. Listen and share so we can increase awareness and help save lives!
Click here to listen

Our Affiliates



How people have been impacted by EPIC Foundation

Dr. Karen Thames has been a constant in my life throughout my journey with my illness. Dr. Thames has provided me and many others in the Cushing’s community with literature, helpful information on our illness, and extensive emotional support for our community. Dr. Thames has not only provided these things to me and others but she has reached out to me personally and shared a gift that was able to raise awareness for our disease. Karen is not only a wonderful, caring woman but she is also a very altruistic, hardworking woman that is determined to help others in need. She will always have my gratitude

Mary M., Ohio

Ask Dr Karen


In honor of the warriors we have lost. The EPIC Foundation honors your legacy forever!

Alice Baker in Memoriam

Alice M. Crowe Baker of McKean, Pennsylvania succumbed to lung cancer and Cushing’s on Thursday October 3, 2002.  Fellow Cushie and friend, Judy, called the Monday after her passing to check on her and learned of her …

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Bonny Ham in Memoriam

Bonny Hamm of Australia, lost her battle with adrenal Cushing’s and cancer on October 12, 2009. She was only 45 years old at the time of her death, succumbing to complications from Cushing’s as far too many Cushies who have died far too young have.

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Charles Hamilton Hawn, IV in Memoriam

Charles Hamilton Hawn, IV was born in 1923 in Braddyville, Iowa. He worked as a nurse on the transport ship USS Barb during World War II.  After he graduated high school at 16 years old, he enrolled at …

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Look out for Dr. Karen’s new book coming soon: “Indomitable! Lessons I have learned in the Midst of fighting and Overcoming Cushing’s Disease!” A book that will encourage and guide you, inspire and empower you!

To reach Dr. Karen’s book agent regarding this project, please contact Public Relations Specialist, Cheryl Dunlap, via e-mail at or phone at 888-862-5554 Ext. 722