During a pre-tournament press conference at this week’s PGA Championship at Whistling Straits Phil Mickelson revealed that he had been suffering from an illness called psoriatic arthritis.
He first noticed the symptoms prior to the US Open when he woke up with pain so bad that he could hardly move. Thanks to anti-inflammatory medication he was able to play four rounds at Pebble Beach and finished in a tie for fourth , but the symptoms worsened significantly during a family vacation at Hawai’i shortly after.
Mickelson went to see specialists at the renowned Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN and the diagnosis was psoriatic arthritis, a condition in which your immune system begins to attack healthy cells and tissue, causing inflammation in the joints and tendons.
However, doctors also told him that the diseases should not have any long term effects on his health: "(I) should be able to live a normal life without having any adverse effects," the reigning Masters champion said. "So I’m not very concerned about it."
Phil is now treating the disease with a weekly shot of Embrel that he applies himself and feels he is at 90% going into this week’s PGA Championship.
The information comes as the latest episode in a series of bad medical news for the Mickelson family: Barely 14 months ago both Phil’s wife Amy and his mother were diagnosed with breast cancer and are since then successfully battling the disease.