Tour veteran and former No. 1-ranked amateur in the world Morgan Hoffmann revealed he has muscular dystrophy, an incurable disease, in a heartfelt essay on the Players Tribune.
Hoffmann's journey for answers began in 2011, when he says he noticed his right pectoral muscle was deteriorating. He decided to seek answers from what became a number of medical professionals.
"That was the beginning of a five-year period of misdiagnoses, frustration and confusion. I visited over 25 doctors," Hoffmann wrote.
Eventually, Hoffmann visited a specialist in New York, who told him he had muscular dystrophy in November of 2016. There is no cure. Hoffmann is 28 years old.
Despite the potentially dire nature of his diagnosis, Hoffmann remains unflappably positive. He intends to fight his disease through a commitment to health and wellness, with the help of his trainer and close friend, Don Saladino.
"I know that there is no guarantee that [I can halt or even reverse my symptoms] because I am eating better, but I want to give myself the best possible chance of beating MD," Hoffman wrote. "And to do that, I’ve completely changed my way of living. My diet consists of all organic food — lots of water and vegetables, good carbs, and protein — and no dairy, gluten or soda. My belief is that if you feed your body right it will run clean."
The speed of the dystrophy — and the part of the body where it will strike next — is unknown. Hoffmann says today his right pectoral muscle is nearly gone, and his left is currently is a state of atrophy.
It's hard to believe there could be a silver lining in Hoffmann's situation, but he finds it. He relies on strength from a close-knit core of family and friends, and is committed to finding a cure for MD, and helping others along the way.
"I am determined to help make a difference," Hoffmann wrote. "I cannot wait to start raising money and awareness to fight this disease! Soon, I will be announcing the date of a charity golf event that I will hold at my home course, the Arcola Country Club in Paramus, New Jersey."
For now, Hoffmann is content to get as much as he can out of each day. He even considers himself "damn lucky."
"This disease won’t keep me from achieving my dream of winning on the PGA Tour — and it shouldn’t keep anyone else from chasing their dreams either," Hoffmann wrote. "I’ve found my calling, and it’s one far beyond golf."