Ann’s Story

Ann Reynolds has a remarkably practical and positive approach to her recent diagnosis of myositis and is now doing all she can to learn about it and share her story.

“It’s what I’ve been dealt with, I can’t I do anything about it, but knowing there is support helps;’ she said.

Ann had been having some health and “choking” issues when swallowing for about eight years, but it wasn’t until last year, at 78, that she finally discovered why.

Ann said she had not heard about myositis when diagnosed and, like many in the community, was unaware of its symptoms. Even a visit to an ear, nose and throat specialist, who did some tests and worked out her muscles were not working, didn’t help much.

“Then a few years ago I started showing more symptoms, I couldn’t use stairs and started having falls, so I saw my GP, who also really didn’t help. He put it down to being a woman,” she said. “I was so I fatigued that I changed to another doctor who sent me to a neurologist, where I had more tests and got the diagnosis last year.”

Ann said it took her “a while” to tell friends about her illness. “I didn’t really understand it myself. But what has really helped is to talk about it, share stories and get helpful tips from others,” she said.

“There is not much I can do about it, but knowing what it is has helped, especially for my husband.”

Ann has had to make some changes to her lifestyle, including moving to a single storey house and not driving any more, but doesn’t let it dampen her outlook.

“There are things I can’t do but I still meet the ladies for coffee, it’s important, and they accept me.”

From story published in Southern Peninsula News 21 May 2024

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