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My Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) journey started when I was in Class 8. I experienced some pain. My parents and I thought that the pain was due to sports & activities and therefore we didn’t pay much attention to it. The pain gradually started increasing and I began experiencing it in different parts of my body.
I consulted a local doctor, and he gave me some medication. I got some relief, but after a few days, the pain returned. Sometimes, I experienced pain in my ankle, other times in my shoulder, lower back, and my hip. I then visited a local orthopedic doctor. His treatment gave me some relief, but the pain never subsided and by then my condition had deteriorated.
I then visited an orthopedic doctor in Mumbai, suggested by my uncle. That doctor in turn referred me to a Rheumatologist. That’s when I was diagnosed with AS (Ankylosing Spondylitis).
I am since being treated for Ankylosing Spondylitis.
He recommended the use of Biologics to treat my AS. Since then, I have been on Biologics ever since. He explained everything to me as to what I should do, not do, etc. He explained the benefits of exercise, being mobile, and being on medication while living with AS.
Initially, when I didn’t know about AS and came to know about it, I was distraught. I questioned God “Why me?”.
Before my treatment, I couldn’t sit for long. As a stock trader, I have to sit for 4 to 5 hours which is something I am able to do after my treatment. Earlier, I couldn’t walk around or sleep or even turn in bed, but now after treatment, I am able to do everything.
My learnings about AS are that we need to consult a Rheumatologist, gather all the information from them and take their advice. AS has taught me to be disciplined which I wasn’t before. It has also taught me the importance of family and their support.
My message to all AS warriors is – “Hang in there, don’t give up. Everything is possible!”