Mild case, I guess

July 25, 2008 at 6:15 pm

I am 60 years old. I was diagnosed with GBS on May 28th of this year. I was lucky, I guess, because when the weakness first came on, after a week and a half in bed with a “virus”, we called a friend who is a doctor in Minneapolis (I live in New York). It was Memorial Day and my doctor was away. Our friend listened to my symptoms, called a couple of his colleagues and told me to get to the hospital ASAP. When I was in the Emergency Room, he spoke to the physician on duty and the Neurologist who came in to see me and told them they suspected GBS. That really simplified things as I was officially diagnosed after only a couple of days. The treatment was started within 4 days of the onset of symptoms and I spent only a week in the hospital and two weeks in rehab. Fortunately, I was never on a respirator. I was released from rehab on 6/17.

Recovery for me seems to have been easier than for many of the people whose posts I have read. While I still have some pain and a lot of numbness on my feet – from the balls of the feet to the toes – I am able to walk without my cane for moderate distances. The tips of my fingers are still numb as well. I still have no jerk reflex in one leg or in my arms, but I am getting my strength back, although my endurance climbing stairs or walking up any kind of slope is pretty bad.

I am a former lawyer who is now a HS teacher and college professor so I have the rest of the summer to build up my strength. I plan to be back in the classroom in September. From what I have read about GBS and the experiences of my fellow patients, I think I was incredibly lucky to have a case that appears to have been either quite mild or was caught, diagnosed and treated very early.:)