Alexis was 2 years old when she was affected by Guillain Barré syndrome a/k/a “GBS.” GBS is an inflammatory disorder of the peripheral nerves outside the brain and spinal cord. Alexis started out with an ear infection and a few days later was unable to walk. We rushed her to the ER where, after a series of tests, she was diagnosed with GBS. She was transferred to Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston where she underwent further testing to confirm the diagnosis. Alexis was given a series of medication with “no promise” of whether she would ever walk again. After 3-4 days the medication started to work and Alexis’s cries stopped. She was in Pediatric ICU for 7 days and when she left, she left the hospital with a walker and months of physical therapy. Through weeks of physical therapy, Alexis was able to fully recover. The doctors told us she has a 10 percent chance of GBS recurring.
While Alexis was in ICU, we were approached by a nice woman who was there to give us information about GBS and what to expect as well as what resources were available to us. We learned the GBS/CIDP International Foundation (“The Foundation”) helps raises awareness and money to fund projects and help those families in need. The Foundation fosters and funds research into the cause, treatment, and other aspects of the disorder. It directs patients with long-term disabilities to resources for vocational, financial, and other assistance.
Today, Alexis is a happy 8 year old little girl with a cute smile and bright eyes. She enjoys school and plays with her friends just like every other little girl. We were so scared and lost when Alexis was first diagnosed with GBS and then later so thankful to know there are resources available to help us deal with what was happening to her.