Champion of Yes Birmingham, Alabama
The pain of arthritis can be difficult. While 10-year-old Parker is still trying to find the ideal medication and therapy, her positive attitude helps her continue to say Yes to being an active kid.
Parker Wilson was only 10 years old when she was diagnosed with spondylarthritis. Extreme pain in her tendons, knees and hips made it difficult for her to move at times. While many new patients wait six months to see a specialist at Birmingham’s Children’s Hospital, Parker was extremely lucky to find a cancelled appointment during her flare. After many tests, doctors were able to diagnosis Parker with a rare form of arthritis.
While Parker’s spondylarthritis is considered well managed using naproxen and tramadol, she still has pain. Like many kids with juvenile arthritis, Parker’s medications bring enough relief for her to function, but do not completely alleviate her discomfort.
When Parker was first diagnosed, she knew nothing about arthritis. Through the years, she has become more educated and learned to be an advocate for herself and others.
“I would say the journey is going to be long and hard,” says Parker, when asked her one piece of advice for newly diagnosed kids. “You have to find what is best for you. Be completely open and honest to your doctor, because the more they know, the more they can help you.