Your Stories

Each individual affected by spondylitis has their own unique story. We at SAA believe that each and every story can be a source of inspiration and empowerment. We’d love your story as well! Send it to us at


By Riley Newman

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

My name is Riley. I was diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis in July of 2016. My symptoms began when I was 16 in the year of 2014. I would miss weeks of school because the pain was too much to handle. I was called names and accused of being a druggie because I was losing so much weight and it took a huge toll on me. Today I am stronger because of it though. Prior to the start of my symptoms I had gotten an ovarian cyst and by the time we found out what it was it had ruptured. No doctor thought that had anything to do with my AS. I was a mystery case and no one knew what to do next. I was trying several different medications for the pain, but sadly after 2 months each medication would stop working for me. I saw specialists, tried acupuncture, and did physical therapy. It wasn't until my neurologist sent me to a rheumatologist in Denver, CO that I was diagnosed. He ran a few tests and within days he knew I had AS. It was a miracle to get an answer and know there was a name for what I was going through. I wasn't being told or treated like I was faking it anymore. Today I am still trying to find the right medication for me and hopefully I will soon.


Riley Newman

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