I am a 42 year old woman and was diagnosed with the disease when I was 24. Initially it was thought that I had 2 slipped discs whilst pregnant. Unable to do anything until the baby was born I had to suffer incredible pain (as you well know). I was fobbed off with Brufen Retard by the GP until I was violently ill due to the useage. It was finally diagnosed when the physio sent me for x-rays. I have the damage in 3 places, neck, shoulders and lower spine.
I was referred to the hospital to see a 'professional' who told me that the damage was caused when I was a teenager and should not be causing me pain now! I was told that I could see a psychologist to 'help with the pain' threrefore more or less told to go away.
My GP then referred me to another hospital's pain clinic were I receive acupuncture, which is bliss, but only lasts for the duration of the needles being in my skin.
I also have problems with my feet, being told to loose weight would help, but after doing my own research have found that it is indicative of osteocondritis anyway, so once again left alone to deal with the pain.
I have a condition with my eyes in that the corneas are eroding. I have since found out by a medico that this is also part and parcel of the condition.
There doesn't appear to be any continuity in advice or support from the medical profession. However, there does seem to be a great deal of ignorance!