Lisa McCarthy

Face 74

I have Ankylosing Spondylitis. ANK-EE-LOSING SPON-DEE-LITUS A.S. for short.

That’s Brittle Spine Disease to you if you have never heard of it. Don’t worry, I had never heard of it either until I was diagnosed with it myself.

I have had A.S most part of my life and I was finally diagnosed in 2010 after suffering with this life altering debilitating disease since my teens. When I say debilitating, I mean, you could be happily going about your daily routine, and then wham! It knocks you literally off your feet. It can put you in bed, sometimes in a hospital bed. For days, weeks and sometimes months at a time.

I have the HLA-B27 gene and suffer with very painful blinding Iritis and other nasty things along with A.S. because what’s A.S. without the many ailments and niggly things it comes with right? It’s like having a salad without the dressing. You can’t just have A.S. you have to have the whole shebang! Aren’t I lucky!

I have two fantastic children and a very supportive network of very close friends that help me get through this disease day by day and all understand how painful and debilitating it can become. They don’t mock or look down on me. They know how hard I fight this monster.

I don’t and will not let A.S. rule me, although sometimes it’s hard to keep pushing through the pain.
I rule A.S.
I wouldn’t wish this painful chronic disease on anyone.
I live in hope that a cure will be found and that my children will not inherit A.S and have to go through what I have fought so hard to come out of.

I found out that I am not alone. For years I thought I was the only one battling this illness as I had never heard of it or knew anyone else with this disease. I am so lucky to have met so many kind and genuine friends through The Faces Of A.S. Group, and other A.S forums, we can talk about how it affects us without judgement from non A.S.’ers. I am astounded just how many unfortunate people are suffering with a disease that isn’t even well known or in the media.

I am a warrior and injecting myself with Humira on a regular basis is becoming an art form in itself.

I will not give up and let this beat me, even when it takes away the use of my legs I will still fight it and I will stand tall.

I stand tall because I’m a warrior in the face of advesity and will die fighting this lifelong incurable painful chronic disease.
I fight not just for me and my family, but for all other A.S.’ers out there feeling lost in the system like I once was.

If you think you may have A.S. the key is to keep seeking answers and keep going to your doctor and attending your hospital visits until you finially get your diagnosis.

It takes approximatley 10 years from the onset of pain for any signs to show up in an MRI or X-Ray.
Do not give up. If you give up, you get no help. No help, you suffer.

Lisa McCarthy

(an A.S. battling Humira junkie warrior) from Leeds, United Kingdom

Thanks Cookie,  what you are doing is absolutely amazing 🙂


One Response to “Lisa McCarthy”

  1. Dear Lisa,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. You are most welcome, it’s been a pleasure and honor, what makes it so amazing is it includes such amazing people!
    Sincerely Cookie

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