My Medical Journey
It's been a long, trying, and difficult journey. I'm still searching for answers.
Since I was young, I always had a bad immune system. So, I would catch everything, mostly stuff that wouldn't affect my future. Except for my knee, I blew it out in baseball 7th grade, torn cartilage among other things. Then, I had 2 c-sections, a hysterectomy, gallbladder surgery, and another knee surgery, all before I was 25.
Experiencing problems they can't seem to treat
I started having problems with my body, a lot of pain, fatigue, and nodules of some type. They are internal and they like to move around, press on organs and nerves, bringing me to my knees. They have always been a big problem they can't seem to treat. They don't show under imaging.
In my 30's, they said it was fibromyalgia, which I think is a catch-all for the drs. Some arthritis and thyroid problems, still no diagnosis on the nodules. My 40's went to Hell. They started with a fall, cracked 4 cervical vertebra due to degenerate disc partly. I had a 4-level fusion, during surgery my Vagus Nerve was pinched which in turn caused all kinds of problems. Not reversible, they affected my heart, BP, stomach, throat, hormones everything non-movement including the spine.
So, for 5 years I was bedridden, my neck did not heal right, I had to get a pacemaker, and could not walk due to severe hypotension amongst a variety other things because of surgery. I did prevail and I'm now able to take care of myself for the most part.
Tired of hurting
After the cervical fusion, the rest of my spine went to crap, my lower back went totally out, I had to have a 2 level fusion in the lumbar, sciatic area. Full of calcium deposits, arthritis, and stenosis.
Still, mind you, I have the nodules causing my grief. My ribs can not be touched, I'm in horrible back pain all the time. My shoulders, hands, and chest too. My life is not where I want it to be, I'm so tired of hurting.
There are others in my family with the same issues I have. I read up AS and going to try and get tested for it. It sounds just like me and others in my family. I truly believe that there is something that has not been diagnosed to explain my health issues.
It felt good to write all this down. I'm sure it's too long for most but didn't know what to leave out.
Love this website, it's so helpful and liberating.
Other than back pain and fatigue, what is the most common symptom that AS patients experience?