Abigail Beck, 15, was diagnosed in April of this year with aquagenic urticaria, a rare water allergy that only 100 people around the world have. Because of her condition, the American, who resides in Arizona (USA), cannot cry, bathe or drink water. The information is from UOL.
Before seeking medical help, Abigail suffered for three years with the symptoms. For the teenager, tears feel like acid and taking a shower hurts.
Before, she thought that feeling pain from water was normal and even asked her mother if she felt the same thing. “I asked recently if she remembers when I asked that and why she didn’t think something was wrong. She said she thought it was something a child would say,” she said in an interview with the New York Post.
“I throw up if I drink water, my chest hurts a lot and my heart starts beating really fast.”
In order not to get dehydrated, the teenager resorted to pills intended for this or other things that “don’t take so much water”, such as energy drinks and pure pomegranate juice.
“I have to check the labels, but everything in this world has water,” said Abigail.
She reported that in the bath the reaction is a little lighter. “When I shower, it starts off very mild, then I get a rash and red welts, then hives develop. When I go out, the reaction really starts to happen. I have to dry it as fast as possible. I have to let the water run and get out of the water while I wash my hair.”
The teenager complained about the lack of information about the rare condition. “I have symptoms that can make my heart stop, but no one knows anything about the condition, so they don’t know if my heart or lungs can stop working,” she said.
“I had to educate my doctors about my condition because they’ve never had to deal with it before.”
Abigail reported that crying is “one of the worst parts” as she feels her face burning. “I cry like a normal person, and it hurts.”
The teenager said that sweat and rain also hurt. “If it’s raining, I probably wouldn’t go out, but if I have to, I make sure I’m fully covered with a jacket and three pairs of sweatpants.”
Despite the difficulties, Abigail is putting together a plan with an allergist for when she is at school.
“I’m afraid that if one day it gets out of hand, no one will know what to do, including me. I don’t even know how to help myself. I try to keep myself in a good mood and I know that if something happens, the people around me will do the best they can.”
Now, the teenager is also looking for other people who have the same condition as her to help them.
“It gets really frustrating. People ask me to explain how it works and I can, but I can’t explain why it happens because nobody knows or understands. When I tell people that I’m allergic to water, people think it’s absolutely ridiculous and a lot of people are shocked by it. People always point out that our bodies are made of water,” she concluded.