Location: Rochester, MN
Diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis at age 31
What would you like for other people to know about your condition? First, if you have not heard of this disease check out the following website to learn the basics: www.stopas.org. Also, the scientific understanding, research, treatments, and prognosis are constantly evolving with this disease. Although I was initially shocked by my diagnosis, which sent me into a deep depression, I am now grateful for the diagnosis in that at least I don't have to keep wondering what is going on, and of course treatment designed for the disease you have is always better than treatment for something you don't have! I do have hope that advances will slow progression or even bring a cure.
What would you tell someone who is newly diagnosed with your condition? There is hope. There are many approaches to treating this disease. I think having faith in your physicians and care team is essential. No question should be disregarded and you need to seek the treatment approach that you are comfortable with.
When I shared my diagnosis with my aunt, she sent me a beautiful note. I hope this excerpt helps you as it has aided me in staying grounded on even the most painful days, “I believe that God gives us life with a purpose attached. And that purpose, whatever it may be for each of us, still remains no matter the circumstances. And sometimes difficult circumstances can even bring our purpose into sharper focus.”
Thank you so much Betsy!!