David was diagnosed in 2011 as having ankylosing spondylitis (AS). To help control his condition he takes etoricoxib, sulfasalazine, prednisolone and lansoprazole.
David is a third-year undergraduate student studying Economics. At the age of 19 he began experiencing stiffness and pain in his neck. Within two months the discomfort spread to the bottom of his spine, his hands and his feet. David was worried that his discomfort was more than just growing pain and consulted his GP. Although his GP ordered blood tests and an X-ray to help identify the problem, David’s results showed no indication of Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS). David was sent home without further testing but his condition continued to deteriorate. Over the space of a year, David sought advice from various medical professionals until he was eventually referred to a rheumatologist. The rheumatologist initially suspected that David had spondyloarthropathy. However, after further tests and examinations this diagnosis changed to AS. Since a confirmed diagnosis of AS can take 8-10 years, David feels fortunate to be diagnosed after only 2 years.
David has been affected by AS in a number of ways. It has significantly reduced his ability to exercise intensely, participate in sport, walk for long distances and stand for prolonged periods of time. It has also affected his hands and impairs his ability to write. However, despite living with a chronic condition, David remains positive. He has friends which share his interest in cooking and dining and he continues to play the piano in a jazz band. David is achieving high grades at university and hopes to continue his studies at postgraduate level. David has been given a disabled students; allowances grant which funds equipment essential to his education.