Kyle Viljoen of Below Deck has revealed his horrific experience after being brought to the hospital after experiencing progressively excruciating symptoms.
In an Instagram post, the reality TV personality claimed that he and his fiancé Dr Zachary Riley had a’scary ride’ late Sunday night when he began to feel ‘basically sick’ after beginning on new medicine.
‘I had no idea the struggle I was about to confront would be the most excruciating and devastating physiological experience of my life,’ he explained.
Kyle reported having ‘throat agony like none other’ by Monday, which had extended to his mouth, lips, fingers, and feet.
He went to a walk-in clinic and was diagnosed with hand, foot, and mouth illness and sent home.
However, by Wednesday and Thursday of that week, his blisters had deteriorated, he had a ‘inability to tolerate eating,’ his tongue had enlarged, and his vision had been compromised.
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After there was ‘no indication of alleviation’ on Friday, his fiancé brought him to the ER at NYU, where he was ‘rushed’ for an examination by medical experts.
He was informed that he had a condition called Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS), which is ‘a rare, serious disorder of the skin and mucous membranes’.
‘Treated as a medical emergency requiring hospitalization. Usually a reaction to certain medications that starts with flu-like symptoms, followed by a painful rash that spreads with bursting and oozing blisters. Then the top layer of affected skin dies & sheds. Treated with intensive IVIG transfusions and medical treatment,’ Kyle explained.
‘With an impeccable medical staff, a loving fiancé, and support of friends and family I am working towards making a full recovery. Having eaten my first meal in 7 days and finding that coconut milk helps with mouth blisters, I am over the moon with optimism and hope.’
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To finish off his post, Kyle shared a ‘few things’ that he had ‘learned from this experience’.
The reality star wrote: ‘One, advocate for your health and treat your body seriously. If something doesn’t feel right seek treatment. Two, family and a support system is EVERYTHING. Without them, I’m not sure where I’d be. And three, try to always get through rough times with lots of love and even more laughs (even when they hurt). ❤️.’
Kyle began his caption with a trigger warning before uploading a series of photographs of his agonizing-looking blisters and bloodied lips.
Several people sent him messages of support in the comment section on Instagram, with one writing: ‘I am so sorry you went through this, but thank god you’re ok ❤️ so good to spread awareness I never heard of that!’
Another wrote: ‘My love I’m so sorry! Well wishes and stay strong! Love you ❤️.’