"My Stay at the RNHRD was Life Changing"

About: Royal National Hospital For Rheumatic Diseases

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.I attended the AS course almost 3 months ago, on the 9th December doing a two week live in physiotherapy course. Before doing the course my life revolved around clock watching, waiting for my next round of medication. I was stiff, I didn't exercise and my fatigue was constant. I have young child and I often lay in whilst I watched him play. I seldom took him out as it was difficult to walk.

This course told me how to fight my AS head on, using gentle exercises, stretches and techniques drawn from yoga, pilates and hydrotherapy. We were taught about medications, how to understand our X-rays, tackle fatigue, occupational therapy and deal with our emotional well-being.

For me I came back a new person, my movement range improved and on whole I improved by an amazing 77%. My life is still of someone who suffers with Ankylosing spondylitis, but I know now how tackle it when it becomes problematic. I am still unable to do the things that I used to do pre AS, but I have got much more quality of life back and for me that enables me to do more with my young son. We all went swimming as a family recently, before this course I never could have dreamt of doing this. I now exercise doing gentle stretches almost everyday. I also have reduced my morphine medication down to half of what I was on pre the course. The course put me on the bottom rung of the ladder for making me in control of my AS. To everyone involved in the AS course thank you, this really does change peoples lives

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Response from Royal National Hospital For Rheumatic Diseases

Thank you for taking the time to write about the care and treatment you have received and your positive experiences of the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases. We are proud of our staff and we will pass on your compliments to the AS team. If anyone reading this message would like to know more about the AS service at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases NHS Foundation Trust they can find out more through the following link: http://www.rnhrd.nhs.uk/page/64