• BREAKING NEWS ABC shows live and on-demand -- Download the WATCH ABC app!

Apple Valley man suffers mystery pain

August 12, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Imagine waking up in total pain -- so bad it's debilitating. It happened to one young man, and his family is struggling to find an answer to what is making their son sick.Swimming, hockey, baseball -- 20-year-old Allan Schwartz excelled in all aspects of athletics.

But after high school, the Allan every one knew started to slip away. Home video captures what this once-vibrant Apple Valley all-star has become.

Allan is not the victim of a horrific accident. At least that would give his family some peace. Instead, medical test after test has only stumped every specialist he's seen.

All they know is two years ago, Allan complained of back pain. X-rays showed a herniated disc. After surgery, he appeared to be recovering.

Then arm and leg numbness set in, followed by pain so excruciating it hurt to move. Even the strongest narcotics didn't seem to help.

One doctor thought Allan might have something called Stiff Person's Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder that has features of an autoimmune disease. But no one can say for sure.

According to the CDC, unexplained illness occurs in about one in 200,000 Americans. But even after all these tests, doctors still couldn't make a clear-cut diagnosis. And in Allan's case, one doctor suggested the pain might be in his head.

Insurance doesn't cover all of the tests, and Allan's illness has exhausted his family's finances.

Despite all the obstacles, his parents continue to pray and fight for their son and hope by telling their story someone will have an idea about what is making Allan sick.

To contact the family, you can e-mail the Schwartz family

 

- Get more L.A. breaking news, weather, traffic and sports
- Have a news tip? Send your tips, video, or pictures


Load Comments