I am Joem from Australia and I am 34, happily married with three kids, 7,9,10. I have a good job and I think I am pretty healthy.
Here is my diary of events regarding RHS.
On Friday 27 July 2012 I had a sore left ear and I thought it would be okay. By Sunday 29 July 2012 it hurt enough that I thought I had an ear infection (so did the weekend GP). On Monday I felt a pimple like blister break in my ear so I thought it was a pimple (they happen sometime for as a teen I had acne). Then on Tuesday morning 31 July at 5:00am I woke to find I could not wink my left eye. I woke my wife and said "honey I can't wink my left eye" not being a morning person she replied "why do you want to?" to which I replied "no seriously, something is not cool"
I went to my regular GP (who is amazing and even if fully booked lets me and my family crash anytime). She saw me at 10am. At first she thought it looked like Bell's Palsy. The blisters in my ear had not fully settled in yet. At that time she mentioned RHS and I saw her on the following Thursday. By this time the pain was insane. I have had eye surgery where I had new lenses sewn onto replace my damaged ones, I have had those stitches removed whilst I was awake and that was NOTHING compared to this.
And so on Thursday 2 Aug 2012 I was diagnosed with RHS. I was put onto the correct steroids and anti virals.
Although the prescribed pain relief was not working, so I went to our Emergency Department at around midnight. That night the Doctor in charge confirmed the diagnosis of RHS and reviewed the treatment issued by my GP and confirmed it was the correct treatment. This was reassuring. I was put onto Oxycontin for 24 hour pain management. After two weeks I have stopped the pain meds and put up with the pain that I get every now and then. I personally think I am a lucky one. I was treated early and appropriately. My taste is sort of better but the left half of my face is still broken.
I have so much to smile about and so ironically it saddens me that I cannot. Thanks to the people who made this site possible.