A.S. Face 0670: Ashley

“My name is Ashley and I’m from Cape Town, South Africa. I was diagnosed with AS in June this year (2012) after suffering from shooting pains down my legs since April 2011. I am one of the lucky few to have been diagnosed with AS within 1.5 years of showing symptoms, even if it was 5 specialists, 2 incorrect diagnoses and 2 caudal epidurals later. I have been on medication since being diagnosed and can honestly say have noticed a substantial improvement since. Although I still have days were I am sore, since last month, come Wednesday nights you will find me on the netball court playing action netball for my team The Titans J I’m only 22 and I am determined that despite having AS and Epilepsy (unfortunately I have that too), I am going to live a full life and do all the things that I love. Run my first 5km race last weekend I am currently in my 3rd year studying Occupational Therapy at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and believe that having these conditions is only going to make me a better therapist as I will be able to relate to my patients on a different level. Hope I can make a difference in the world someday. I’m a ‘glass half full’ sort of girl and I’m not going to let this get the best of me J Life is for living and I’m going to live it. Keep your heads up high fellow AS-ers”

Kind regards,


South Africa

5 Responses to “A.S. Face 0670: Ashley”

  1. Keep up the optimism! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Kasey (face667), if you are reading Ashley’s story, this is what I’m talking about right here! Lotsa hope for the young people. Using AS to shape your life in a positive way. Kick butt guys. This is the kind of medicine no doctor will give you.

    Ashley, I haven’t given out this award in awhile. But I’m gonna give you the “If the HLA-B27 gene is required to get AS (I know Cookie,I know the gene isn’t required, but don’t spoil my fun), then the beautifull gene must also be required” award!

  3. Thanks Derek for the kind words 🙂 Not saying that there aren’t bad days, but I’m determined to find the good in every day. AS is just a diagnosis, and is not who I am. I am a determined, driven optimistic girl who just happens to have something extra below the surface. Hope other young early AS sufferers can find hope in my story like I did in reading so many other AS Face stories

  4. Dear Ashley,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us.
    Sincerely Cookie

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