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DISH (D.I.S.H) - Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal Hyperostosis

Page last updated: 18th July 2009

Introduction

I am now aware that symptoms of this nasty condition have been occurring in me since 2001, although at that time and for some considerable time after, these symptoms were never attributed to DISH. As a result, considerable effort, time and expense has been expended by Health professionals in chasing the cause of these.

This document’s intended audience is fellow sufferer’s of DISH, together with Health professionals treating the condition. I hope that this collection of experiences gained may help and inform in some small way, such that a more rapid and correct diagnosis of the condition is reached, hopefully reducing the number of procedures that are carried out before a correct diagnosis is achieved.

I am not a doctor, and have no medical expertise whatsoever, barring a first-aid certificate. Most of the opinions expressed here are my own, and where they are not, I’ve referenced the source.

I would be happy to answer any questions regarding my experience of this condition, and I give advance permission for these pages, or parts thereof, to be freely copied or quoted by anyone who is involved in the suffering, diagnosis and/or treatment of DISH, providing acknowledgement of the source is given.

Copies of the content of these pages will be made available in several different formats.

I would like to thank the Consultants and staff of North Tyneside General hospital who have helped, and continue to help me, through quite difficult times. I also have a special thanks for my GP. Dr. Angus McManners for his patience and support over many years.

J.W.Brown 16th July 2009

DISH Symptoms

Symptoms of DISH are many and varied, and also will differ from person to person and also with time. It is generally assumed that the condition progresses quite slowly, and this may indeed be true – but not slow enough for some sufferers. What seems also to be true is the offhand way in which certain of the symptoms are briefly described, then dismissed by some Health professionals. Very little in the way of advice about coping with the symptoms is either forthcoming from them or available in the public domain. Searches on the Web return references to oft-repeated short descriptions, or poorly-subscribed forums containing nothing more than whinges.

Of all of the symptoms associated with DISH, the most distressing I have had to deal with is Dysphagia. The sadness is that it was also the first symptom that made it’s presence felt, and because of it’s nature, in quite a dramatic way. Several years passed before the real cause of the Dysphagia was discovered, and managing the problem was left almost entirely in my own hands. Consequently I had to put in place a set of strategies to help me cope with the condition. An article describing those strategies forms the first installment on these pages.

Let me say here and now, if you are a 1st-time sufferer, there may be difficult times ahead, and I hope that my experiences documented here will help you in some small way, because you will overcome the problems. With slight adjustments to your life-style and state-of-mind, the Dysphagia will simply become just another boring detail that you are more than capable of dealing with.

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