A.S. Face 0645: Gillian
I was diagnosed with AS at 28. After many smaller theories such as bursitis I woke up one morning unable to walk due to pain, shortly after being accepted into a Registered Nursing program. Every morning for a week was the same. I would crawl on my hands and knees to the bathroom and then by 11 am I was restored to my usual tolerable level of pain.
Ultimately, I was diagnosed with AS and the MRI showed multiple areas of inflammation and fusing over the years. Some areas do not inflame for years while others progress. I married and on my honeymoon in Barbados became very ill. Upon returning to Toronto I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Interestingly this has been a blessing. I have learned through having Crohn’s that what I eat that affects my bowel and if I control that then the inflammation in my joints is much less. Overall I have become a healthier person.
Unfortunately, for several years I was severely inflamed in the SI area and instead of progressing “North” the inflammation progressed towards and affected my pubic bone. For 3 years going to the bathroom was an ordeal and one of the most painful experiences I have had. So no babies.
I have learned to take each day and prioritize and live a peaceful life. Years of heavy meds have played heavily on my teeth and bones. But, happiness and contentment are like medicine and I am now at a better place than I have every been.
Gillian and Adam