Thanks for all your help
April 09, 2016
BENEFITING: SPONDYLITIS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA
My Son Michael was just recently diagnosed with an Autoimmune disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis. Michael was an active 22 year old, until 2 ½ years ago. He started with a bad pain in his knee. He was told that it might be Lyme disease, Septic Arthritis, or chronic inflammatory disease. It took a one blood test after so many other blood test for a gene to come back, HLA-B27. Ankylosing Spondylitis is very hard to diagnose, it can take up to 10 years for signs of the disease to show. Michael already has signs showing. Here is the a little more of understanding the disease: Ankylosing spondylitis (pronounced ank-kih-low-sing spon-dill-eye-tiss), or AS, is a form of arthritis that primarily affects the spine, although other joints can become involved. It causes inflammation of the spinal joints (vertebrae) that can lead to severe, chronic pain and discomfort. In the most advanced cases (but not in all cases), this inflammation can lead to new bone formation on the spine, causing the spine to fuse in a fixed, immobile position, sometimes creating a forward-stooped posture. This forward curvature of the spine is called kyphosis. More information on kyphosis and fusion can be found in the complications section. AS can also cause inflammation, pain and stiffness in other areas of the body such as the shoulders, hips, ribs, heels and small joints of the hands and feet. Sometimes the eyes can become involved (known as Iritis or Uveitis), and rarely, the lungs and heart can be affected. See the Complications of Spondylitis: How is a Person Affected? page for more information. The hallmark feature of ankylosing spondylitis is the involvement of the sacroiliac (SI) joints during the progression of the disease, which are the joints at the base of the spine, where the spine joins the pelvis. Here is the Organization that this fundraiser is for: https://www.spondylitis.org/Learn-About-Spondyloarthritis/Ankylosing-Spondylitis#.VtDQXltv1aE.link. Michael is still working till this day. He had to put college on the back burner for a while. I'm happy to say that he is currently back in college. For 2 years Michael couldn’t get out of bed without being in horrible pain. He was lucky if he got 4 hours of sleep at night. He was put on Prednisone for 2 years. Right before Christmas Michael was approved to take Humira. We were scared of the side effects that Humira has. The medicine before this didn’t help Michael at all. On the 5th of December 2015, Michael had his first injection of humira. The next day Michael woke up and was able to walk and feel hardly no pain. He is not completly pain free, but he is a whole lot better, thanks to Humira. The humira was the best Christmas present. The happiness that my son felt was overwhelming. He was back to my Michael before this disease affected him. He has gained back a lot of his weight. He is full of life again. Before the humira was prescribed, Mike was told that he needed knee replacements, cause his knees have been destroyed by this disease. We are praying that the medicine will help keep Mike standing on his own as long as possible. I want to help the Spondylitis Association of America, so they can find a cure. Please keep Mike in your prayers. The Spondylitis Association of America (SAA) is a nonprofit organization founded in 1983 to address the needs of people affected by spondyloarthritis. Since that time, SAA has been at the forefront of the fight to promote medical research, educate both the medical community and general public and advocate on behalf of the people we serve. So all donations will go to the cause. Thank you in advance for helping.