According to the Global Genes Project, upwards of 300 million people worldwide are impacted by rare disease. Catch the full feature on the reach and impact of rare diseases, such as Cushing’s, at this link.
Didn’t catch the WITF Smart Talk segment with Marie Conley? Listen and read the interview here.
My Cushing’s story started long before I realized it was being written. It is hard to say exactly when I exhibited my first symptom, but looking back at pictures, I began displaying a rounded “Cushing’s face” during my undergraduate studies in the late 1990s. I began dealing with minor anxiety at that time, but that didn’t seem too abnormal given my busy and intense schedule.
As I moved on to graduate school in the fall of 1999, I began having some skin issues, again nothing too out of the ordinary. In the fall of 2000, I became sick and unable to eat, which eventually was diagnosed as a failing gallbladder, which was removed at the end of that year. Although it’s unclear whether there is a connection between Cushing’s and my gallbladder issues, that was the first of many significant health issues I encountered over the next 13 years.