Because of David’s medical situation, we have decided to come back to the U.S. for a furlough so that David can be treated by doctors there. We are planning to be already in the U.S. by February, and everything is happening really fast.
Just in case you’re not up-to-date with what’s happened, David has ankylosing spondylitis, a form of arthritis. Right now, it mainly affects his sciatic nerves and one of his ankles, but parts of his back, hands and feet have also been affected as well. It creates swelling and pain around the joints and tendons.
Here’s a basic timeline of our adventures with it so far:
- Early September
- David starts to have gradually increasing back pain. At first, we think it’s just a pinched nerve.
- After a couple of days, the pain is so bad that David cannot walk
- We start going to the doctor, and begin treatment with pain relievers and steroids
- Mid September
- The doctors start eliminating the different possibilities of what the diagnosis could be
- David notices that the pain he has actually gets worse the more he rests
- Late September – The doctors are pretty sure that David has ankylosing spondylitis, but they want a second opinion
- The diagnosis is confirmed with a second MRI
- David starts a special “no starch” diet to help control his pain (long story)
- Things get much better with pain in David’s back, but the pain in his ankle gets much worse
- November – We decide it’s best if we go to America to get treatment
- December – Preparations to leave for America