A.S. Face 1210: Brittany Lavin
In 1999 I was 18 and in a car accident. A car had t-boned us and although I felt good at first a few hours later my back started hurting. A x-ray showed compression fractures of T,6,7,8. As years went by my legs became number, I had pains down my legs and accounted it being from the car accident. I had further testings done finding nerve damage from nerve conduction tests and was diagnosed with degenerative disk disease at 25. Showing I had few disks left at all. During this time I had my 7 children and found it very hard to do epidural a as they could never get it in the correct space. It would hit bones and nerves and take so many try’s I would often get spinal headaches. In my last pregnancy I became very ill with what we finally found out was a pseudo tumor cerebra (mimics a real brain tumor) I went blind from brain and optic nerve swelling, had massive migraines, ringing in my ears. The therapy for that is spinal taps to take fluid off your brain through your epidural space. I had many and again it was very hard to do because they would hit bone and nerves and cause spinal headaches… I also found out I had eosinaphiliac esophaligitis causing stomic bleeds and ulcers and making it hard to eat as most foods I am allergic to. Once I had my last child the PT and EOE calmed down a bit but my lower back was still killing me. I found a new GP because my current would continue to make excuses and say it was Just the DDD. My new GP ran a bunch of tests and saw my ANA was positive and sent me to a Rhum. It took me a long time to get into see her but when I did she said a positive ANA really didn’t mean much and she ran a bunch of blood work. I got a call 2 days later telling me I had a positive HLA-B27 and they wanted a x-ray of my lower back. I had one done and the next day they said they wanted a MRI of my lower back as well. I had that done and was told it looked like partial fusion. My Rhum said she thought it was Psoriatic arthritis at first by my nails but after the MRI and hearing my grandfather had AS she changed her mind. She wants me to have a colonoscopy to rule out crohns as that also runs in my family and with my history of stomic issues. I have that done tomorrow and if I have crohns I start remicade and if not Humira in a couple weeks. The couple years I have had so many troubles with back pain, blindness, stomic bleeds, headaches and such exhaustion I couldn’t lift a arm or move my head. This winter my knees began to swell HUGE for no reason at all. That was another sign of the AS while I was going through all these testings. I have been on so many meds the last year to lower spinal fluid, migraine meds, Botox for migraines, three stomic meds. Inhailors for my asthma and prednisone almost constantly from the swelling. I look forward to trying the meds for the AS and hope it all gets better. It’s been rough. My house is a total disaster. Many times I can’t get off the couch. I haven’t been able to grocery shop on months. The guilt is tremendous. I’m praying so much that this helps me.. Anyway that’s my story and I’m so blessed to have found this group and you cookie! Your a Inspiration!! Oh and before I forget the date I first had back pain to diagnosis was almost 15 years.
New York, United States of America