In the fall of 1991, Kathy gave birth to a beautiful baby boy named Isaac. But Kathy and her husband knew something wasn’t right. Isaac was their third child. Born so skinny and small the only socks that fit Isaac were doll socks. He wasn’t developing, and he was always sick; he battled bronchitis to pneumonia to acid reflex among other “illnesses” as a young toddler. He ate a very bland diet, but still he regularly got sick at the mere site and smell of food. He couldn’t go outside and play with his big brother and sister and he was practically attached to a nebulizer.
The Antilla family worried if he would ever get better. Was he going to live long? All they wanted was a diagnosis; an official identification of Isaac’s illness or whatever is was by examination of his symptoms. But therein lied the challenge. It took five and a half years of doctor hopping and pill popping for Isaac to receive the diagnosis: Common Variable Immunodeficiency Disease (CVID). Isaac, now 24 years old was born with a chronic, rare disease. Today Isaac receives antibody infusions every two weeks and will continue this treatment for the rest of his life.
Symptoms can be nonspecific and variable, depending on the person, and many diagnostic tests are not only expensive, but they aren’t done routinely and can’t be pin pointed unless doctors know what they are looking for; one specialist says, “well it could be this” and another specialist says, “no, its not that, it may be this” – and the frustrating, disheartening, seemingly hopeless search for answers continues.
Common variable immunodeficiency (CVID) is 1 of a group of approximately 150 primary immunodeficiencies (PIDs), which have a common set of features but different underlying causes.
Watch the full video here or below: