My name is Reevu Neogi. I am currently 23 years old and finishing up with my final year of medical school in the Ukraine, however, I was born and raised in India. I remember the first time I experienced the effects of Spondylitis, it was the year of 2011 and I was 17 years old at the time. I was at a sports event at my school, when suddenly I felt my legs go numb and I could not run anymore. I had to stop immediately and rush home. The very next morning I kept trying to stand up, but I could not get up. At first, I thought it was a muscle spasm or something similar but even with my mother’s help and trying for 30 minutes I was unable to. It was then I realized that something was terribly wrong.
After visiting a doctor and getting tests done I was diagnosed with Ankylosis Spondylitis. I was lucky enough to have the funds for biologics, specifically Monoclonal Antibody Infliximab, which has helped me significantly with pain management. I hope that one day the prices for disease modifying agent treatments become more affordable and available for those that need it. Even with the treatments, the unexplainable pain at times can be debilitating and unfortunately it has become a part of my life never to leave. It feels like the only people going through it can truly understand and relate to what I am going through.
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