About Keeya

Living with mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS) is a truly an isolating experience, not only because it’s debilitating, but it is extremely difficult to understand. MCAS is complicated and unique to each individual. My goal is to raise awareness about MCAS, chronic illness, and disability through humor.

I was diagnosed with MCAS in December 2015 after five abnormal mast cell test results and a lifetime of symptoms. I rely on medications and supplements to block or reduce the ridiculous amounts of chemical mediators released by my mast cells. I spend most of my time in solitary confinement (even pre-pandemic!) to minimize my exposure to triggers.

I also deal with the following conditions often associated with MCAS.

  • Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS): My connective tissue is fragile and my joints are hypermobile. So, my muscles have to work extra hard to keep everything in place. Most recently, I had a spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leak, a common complication of EDS. Read more.
  • Hyperadrenergic dysautonomia: When I stand up and my body is under stress, my blood pressure spikes and my hands tremor. There are many types of dysautonomia, including Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS).
  • Interstitial cystitis (IC): Inflammation of the urinary tract is a very common symptom of MCAS. I began experiencing symptoms at age 3. My right ureter swells and spasms often causing obstructions and pain in my right kidney. Salicylates are my biggest urinary tract trigger. Read more.
  • Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD): I have severe mast cell reactions to normal hormone fluctuations. I take continuous hormone pills to suppress fluctuations and avoid reactions. Read more.
  • Food sensitivities: salicylates, histamine, FODMAPs, and gluten.

Support my work

Thank you Ann, Tamsyn, Stephanie, Kathryn, Kelly, Jenna and Ben, Bree, Deserae, Jocelyn, Alissa, Kay, Karen, Hayden, and Elizabeth for supporting this blog on Patreon! I rely on patrons to help me pay for this blog and graphic design tools–it’s not free! You can become a patron for as little as $1/month and get access to patron-only posts.

Support my work

All content contained on this web page is copyrighted. Feel free to share direct links, but please ask if you’d like to use text or a photo. Feel free to share my social media graphics, but please tag me in the post.

Contact me at hellsbellsandmastcells@gmail.com.