Doctors Called Her CVID Fake. The Truth? They Suck!

Common variable immune deficiency (CVID) occurs when the body doesn’t produce sufficient amounts of certain antibodies (also called immunoglobulins) in the liquid part of the blood. The result is the patient’s immune system is less effective in fighting toxins, microorganisms, viruses, etc.

Most of the time, it isn’t diagnosed until after the patient passes the age of four because the immune system develops slowly.

But still, many members of the healthcare community have no idea what CVID is, so people go undiagnosed and, worse, they go untreated.

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Blogger Ashleigh describes how CVID has affected all aspects of her life. She was diagnosed in 2013 after life-long bouts of bronchial infections and other illnesses.

At first, when searching for a diagnosis, doctors told her she may have lymphoma, but that wasn’t the case. Others accused her of hypochondria.

Nope. Not that, either.

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Many doctor visits later, Ashleigh was told that they simply didn’t know what was wrong with her. How frustrating! But Ashleigh kept living her life. She had her spleen removed shortly before her wedding and then had a normal pregnancy; however, after her daughter was born, her condition worsened.

Finally, Ashleigh saw an immunologist who, after doing blood work, diagnosed her with CVID.

Ashley now has regularly scheduled infusions of replacement immunoglobulins which help her to stay as healthy as possible, but she does have scarring on her lungs from repeated bronchial infections and occasionally, she suffers from eczema. But as a busy mother of two children (including one with special needs), Ashleigh is vigilant about staying on treatment, although she admits some days are harder than others.

Erica Zahn

Erica Zahn

Erica Zahn is passionate about raising awareness of rare diseases and disorders and helping people connect with the resources that may ease their journey. Erica has been a caregiver, and is a patient, herself, so she completely relates to the rare disease community--on a deeply personal level.

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