May is an Awareness Month for Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS).
I was diagnosed with this a few years ago when images showed a wear-and-tear in my spine.
I have been getting all sorts of treatments just to manage the pain. Some of which worked (Injections) and others that have not worked (Humira).
I have had 7 injections thus far. I will have my 8th in June.
They work great by taking away the pain. The seventh one I had was about 6 months ago (20th of May will be 6 months) and honestly it is still working great.
One thing I am doing differently then the other injections is weekly Chiro and exercising more.
For a while with Ankylosing Spondylitis I was unable to get out of bed. My spine would feel paralyzed and I would have to use my windowsill to pull me up.
I wouldn’t be able to bend to put on shoes or socks.
On the ice I would not be able to do anything that required bending (including drags).
If I fell on the ice, I would have the hardest time standing up. And after the incident in one of my first competitions in 2018 where I collapsed and was not able to stand up, this has become an major fear on my part.
I have also noticed that the injections tend to take away flexibility and make some things harder. But eventually with physiotherapy-like exercises it does become better.
Some of the symptoms of AS that I have are;
- Inflammatory pain. It is shown on images that there is inflammation.
- Spine/Neck/Buttocks pain. I also get the severe pain from time to time in my shoulders, ribs and heels.
- Stiffness especially in the morning.
I tested positive for the HLA-B27, which shows there is a higher-than-average risk for an autoimmune disorder.
What’s next for me and AS? Well if you have read some of my other posts. Some complications have come up with a spine injury following a car accident.
I just underwent an MRI and I am awaiting the results which should be appearing at the end of the month.
I am trying to manage AS and every other condition I have. Everything seems to be linked together. It just creates new challenges, some that I am willing to look forward to saying that I beat them.
The injection I know is temporary until I can find a permanent treatment (Surgery is considered an option). But as of right now it is still a wait and see.