This is my very first post on Reddit so I hope I don’t screw this up too much. The best way to start this is to give yall a little background on my past. Growing up I was always taller, bigger, and stronger than all the other boys in my class. I was never overweight at all but even throughout elementary school I seemed to be just an overall bigger kid such as large head, hands, and feet (I have a size 17 shoe now). Some parents would maybe see this as a slightly concerning matter but that thought never crossed my parents mind because my family is filled with tall people. My dad is 6’3 and I have a couple 6’4 uncles and my parents just figured I had good genes. I was also a sufferer of migraine headaches my entire life starting at a young age and I would often see doctors about that. The conclusion we came to about that issue is that I just inherited the family tradition of migraines since many of my relatives get them.
So, skip to January 2nd of 2011, I am 19 years old. That morning I wake up with a migraine. Nothing is different about this one except for the fact that it lingers for over a week. When the spring semester of school starts I still have the migraine and the whole time I’m just thinking it will run its course and will go away. After having it for several weeks with no relief it gets so bad that one night it literally brings me to my knees so I quickly call my girlfriend and have her take me to the hospital. While I’m there the doctor gives me a brain scan and sends me back to the room where my girlfriend is anxiously waiting. Several minutes pass before the doctor comes in with a look of complete disgust and tells me that she found a tumor on my pituitary gland. She doesn’t say much after that and gives me a prescription for hydros and just leaves. I simply cannot describe to you what it is like having someone tell you that you have a brain tumor. I look over to my girlfriend and she is sobbing while I am just in disbelief. The very next thing I did was call my dad and tell him the news.
The rest of the story I’m gunna keep brief to leave room for questions. The next day my parents pick me up from school, which is a couple hours away from home, and my long medical journey starts. I’m from Atlanta and I have an uncle who is a doctor and knows the best guy in the world for doing surgery on pituitary glands at Emory hospital. This doctor is booked and has a new patient waiting list of a year or so. Because of my connection I get an appointment within 24 hours. Surgery is scheduled for 2 weeks later and it turns out to be a very long surgery with an even longer recovery. Within the 2 weeks before my brain surgery I underwent countless tests on my physical attributes and endocrine system and I am diagnosed with acromegaly. I take the semester off and over the course of the next couple years I am put on countless hormone therapy medicines aimed to lower my growth hormone that I have to inject my self with several times a day. And another hormone therapy medicine that I inject once a month, this one in particular is extremely painful (and expensive… upwards of $10,000 per shot without health insurance). The needle is enormous and the medicine itself has the consistency of a semi frozen jello. These two meds brought my growth hormone down but not enough so I underwent 6 long weeks a radiation (I had to freeze sperm prior to my radiation). Today, I am being told that I will be taking these medicines for the foreseeable future… maybe up to 10 or more years. I still suffer from headaches and take a slew of powerful prescription narcotics to relieve the pain. Down the road I am destined for countless problems stemming from this disease and eventually the total failure of my pituitary gland but I know that part can be fixed by taking a few hormone supplements.
Today I am back at school and I should be graduating in a year. I am happy and enormously blessed and humbled by how lucky I actually am. This whole ordeal could have been much worse. This disease is deadly and more times than not the patient lives a short painful life before succumbing to the disease. It gives me chills just thinking how lucky I was to receive this medical care. I have the best team of doctors who genuinely care about my family and I. I have the most loving parents who have sacrificed so much to make all this happen. And my girlfriend has been there from the beginning and she has helped me every step of the way. Sorry for being extremely vague in the end but I am here for anyone who has anything to ask me at all!
Proof... http://imgur.com/OGCMu (monthly shot) http://imgur.com/SxsWJ (daily shots) http://imgur.com/TWW2e (radiation mask) http://imgur.com/cKkze (radiation mask) http://imgur.com/nbqZW (scannable ID card for radiation)
Photo of me (6'7) standing next to my gf (5'9). Some of yall have messaged me about seeing a picture. http://imgur.com/qpThs