Patient Stories

Share Your Story and Inspire Others

Sharing your story and experience as a patient or caregiver can truly inspire other individuals with these rare conditions. The GBS|CIDP Foundation invites you to join patients of all ages, caregivers and heros who have contributed their experience and inspire others living with GBS, CIDP, MMN and related conditions.

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If you would like to be included, please submit a story. We would love to hear from you & share your journey!

Clarissa Gennari

July 22, 2024

I’m Clarissa, 24 years old. At the time of my GBS diagnosis, I was 23 and had been working as an educator in a nursery for two years. I’m also a lifeguard and a swimming instructor, and I am currently pursuing a master’s degree in the design and coordination of educational services. I’ve always been…

Pravin Chetty

July 22, 2024

I was born and grew up in the coastal city of Durban, South Africa (SA) in 1967. The British indentured Indians in the late 1800s to work the sugar cane fields. Despite the oppressive Apartheid Laws affecting Black South Africans, I was able to study a Bachelor of Science degree with majors in Geology, Geography…

Adrian Voller

July 11, 2024

I played three hard sets of tennis on Thursday 5 July 1990 against a man of 26 (half my age), felt my legs tingling that evening, but thought no more about it. By the following Monday, it was much worse, and my wife insisted I go to the doctor that morning. He referred me to…

Arthur Danziger

July 11, 2024

I was 28 years old, living in Paris, France when I developed GBS. Within 3 days, I became completely paralyzed from my feet to my eyes, intubated on a respirator. Blinking my eyes was my only physical act. Within 30 days I was free of the respirator and walking unassisted. Today, at 74 years old,…

Jessica Bohorquez

May 28, 2024

In 2018 I had a food poisoning episode and for a month after I had symptoms such as blurry vision, numbness and tingling, extreme fatigue, and balance issues which eventually led to losing my ability to walk and paralysis from the hips down. A spinal tap confirmed the diagnosis- GBS. I had IVIG and over…

Timothy Pickering

May 28, 2024

In January of 2015, whilst training for a triathlon, I started feeling weak and out of breath. Putting this down to nothing more than a cold, I continued training. Progressively, the symptoms continued getting worse, however, not listening to my body, I continued to train. 4th February – I had extreme pins and needles in…

Robert Siefken

April 22, 2024

One morning (some years ago), I’d just got done paying for some goodies at the local 7-11, stepped off the curb to get into my car, and had this weird feeling in my legs. Two days later, I found myself in a local ICU, unable to walk and barely able to use either hand. After…

Devon Howard

April 12, 2024

In February 2023, my life took an unexpected turn. A searing nerve pain and crippling muscle weakness engulfed my body, leaving me bewildered and helpless. Each day became a torturous struggle as the insidious symptoms of CIDP progressed. The relentless burning sensation tormented my nerves, and my muscles had no strength, rendering me unable to…

Britt McCabe

April 11, 2024

My decline came rapidly, I am one of the rare acute cases of CIDP that was originally diagnosed as GBS. At 35 weeks pregnant, I started getting tingling in my hands and feet followed by that rapid decline I mentioned over the course of 9 days. At 36 weeks pregnant doctors diagnosed me through a…

Shane Sumlin

April 5, 2024

“I REALLY want folks to know, they are NOT ALONE.” We sat down with GBS survivor, volunteer and member of our board of directors Shane Sumlin, to find out more about his positive outlook, what motivates him, and what he’d really like the community to know. Here’s what Shane had to say: Shane, when did…

Kadence Holthouser

April 4, 2024

On March 4, 2023, Kadence woke up with double vision and numbness to her face. We took her to the ER but with no other symptoms, they released us thinking it was an ocular migraine fast forward a day and her eyes were starting to cross and we could just tell something wasn’t right. We…

Richard Smolik

March 8, 2024

The life I thought I was going to have was just that beginning in 2012. Being an athlete, I always took pride in keeping in shape. I was a concrete finisher by trade and exercised regularly. Running several miles once a week was part of my routine. Sports was one of my passions and played…

Jeroen van Piggelen

March 7, 2024

One day, I was flying as a pilot in a Boeing 737, the next day I woke up at home and within 4 hours I was paralyzed up to my neck. Guillain-Barré Syndrome they concluded after a long day of testing. This happened to me 10 years ago in April this year. But I refused…

Jordan Acosta

February 23, 2024

I was diagnosed with atypical CIDP in March 2022 following a horrible case of COVID that resulted in being hospitalized for a couple days. I can’t begin to eloquently describe what it felt like when my symptoms started. Like sharp pins and needles all throughout my legs that made me think my legs were falling…

Brenda, Making the Most of Now

February 20, 2024

Saturday I ripped the Band-Aid off and took my rollator, Gert, out for her maiden voyage. It was harder than I thought it would be and I cried for the first five minutes. I think you always hold out hope things will get better and we are not always honest with ourselves. MMN is progressive…

Richard Sperry

February 9, 2024

I am a patient living with MMN and was diagnosed in early 2020 after being misdiagnosed twice with ALS. Experiencing progressive symptoms, watching myself get weaker and lose muscle mass, and then being told I have a terminal disease was one of the most trying experiences of my life. I will never forget the day…

Sait Mentesbirlik

February 2, 2024

In April 2013, my life took an unexpected turn when I was struck by a rare disorder known as Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS). Until then, I had never heard of this condition, nor did I anticipate the profound impact it would have on every aspect of my existence. It all began with difficulties swallowing in the…

Natalie Ng

January 31, 2024

I started having symptoms in my right thumb in 2013. I was pregnant at the time, so every doctor I saw wrote it off as carpel tunnel and told me to come back if it didn’t go away once I gave birth. Needless to say, it didn’t! My whole hand, then slowly my wrist and…

Learn from MMN Patients in our Video Library

January 29, 2024

Richard Warkentin

December 28, 2023

Once the prednisone regime was begun I soon became able to start moving my arms and legs a little at a time and slowly build strength in a recovery program.  After a total hospital time of 90 days I was able to leave Rehab and return home to continue recovery on my own, with wheelchair,…

Benny, My Number One Supporter

December 8, 2023

Benny, my husband, is my number one supporter and the reason I have come so far from where this all started. I was on a ventilator and in the ICU for many months. Benny made sure I was not alone for a single day. He coordinated with my sisters to ensure that I had somebody…

Edward Gent

December 7, 2023

The train is here, and I’m already late for work. Better sprint the short 50 m distance between my front door and the train station – as I am quickly becoming a master at. It’s been raining, and the steps up to the platform are soaking. I’m panting heavily, the conductor’s whistle has been blown,…

Audrey Palmer, Our Fighter

October 26, 2023

My sweet 3-year-old Audrey was diagnosed on 4/23/23 (her birthday) with GBS and we have been in the hospital ever since. She is currently in inpatient rehab and doing great but still has a ways to go to walk again- lots of pain in her feet and legs. She is working so hard and is…

My Mom, My Hero

October 23, 2023

I don’t know where I would be without my mom, Maria. From calling the doctor for me when I refused to go get checked out to laying awake with me all of those painful sleepless nights during recovery, my mother proved to me day after day that she was going to fight this battle with…

Jaye Bea

October 3, 2023

One such story is Jaye Bea’s and how she made lifelong friends. At the 2022 GBS Symposium in Florida, a fortuitous meeting brought together three individuals who would form an unbreakable bond. Jaye Bea, a newcomer to the GBS|CIDP community, had arrived at the symposium eager to learn and connect with others. Little did she…

DanaWynn Sherman

September 19, 2023

On the weekend of July 4th, 2014,  while on a camping trip on Fire Island, I woke up one day and my right foot was numb,  I worried it was a spider bite, but nothing was visible on my foot. It dissipated a bit during the day but the next morning I awoke and both…

Clint Shaffer

August 17, 2023

In early 2022, the bottom of a few of my toes on both feet was going numb.  While this was odd, I did not pay this the credence I should have and simply went about my life.  Stranger still, as the weeks and months would progress, that same numbness would begin to spread.  In addition…

Joey

August 11, 2023

My hero is my late husband, Joey. When my legs suddenly stopped working in December 2011, we thought it was simply extreme weakness due to my recent illness so I was never hospitalized. Joey was working in retail management which in December meant 10-14 hour shifts, 5-6 days a week. He now had to take…

Muna Siddiqi

August 10, 2023

In December 2021, I was in Karachi Pakistan for our family reunion. One morning, I tried to get out of bed but collapsed. I noticed that my left leg had no strength. Within 24 hours, I was completely paralyzed, neck down. Fortunately I have several doctors in the family and I got the diagnosis of…

June

July 6, 2023

May of 2022, our 2 year old began walking oddly. It was such a slow decline, I thought I was going crazy. After a few weeks of realizing there has to be something wrong, I called June’s pediatrician in tears. She trusted me and sent me straight to the Seattle Children’s Hospital ER. After a…

Ariana

July 6, 2023

Initial visits to Gibraltar Health Authority (GHA) resulted in an inconclusive diagnosis. Another doctor thought it was a stomach bug. But as Ariana’s condition worsened, her parents persisted, seeking a second opinion. Eventually, she was admitted to the Rainbow Ward at GHA, where a dedicated team of healthcare professionals worked tirelessly to uncover the cause…

Dr. Alan Ropper and Dr. Kenneth Gorson

May 31, 2023

I had what was characterized as an acute episode of GBS in 1994 and was sent to the SCU at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Brighton, MA. My heroes are Drs. Alan Ropper, and Kenneth Gorson, who were a team at that time. The reason I nominate them as my heroes is that they made me part…

Lowell Stoltzfus

May 23, 2023

May 21, l991 began like most other days on the farm.  My brother Tim and I farmed.  We milked 120 cows and farmed 1500 acres – corn, beans, and alfalfa.  We needed some alfalfa sod to put late corn in.  I needed to hook up the hydraulics on the plow to the tractor and I…

Suzanne Pimentel

May 22, 2023

Diagnosed in 2018.  Spent 6 weeks in the hospital, unable to walk. Upon being discharged, I returned home in a wheelchair.  Fast forward to today, I run 4 miles a day and am able to write/type again with the help of the amazing physical/occupational therapist who helped me!  I even returned to work in 2021.

Gary Howard

May 22, 2023

 In July of 2007, at the age of 32, I became ill with a “cold” which led to a sinus infection. I had intestinal issues which led to having green bowel movements. I finally went to go to see a doctor and he prescribed a “very strong” antibiotic. The next weekend I was preaching at…

Henry Jackson

May 22, 2023

Our journey with GBS began Wednesday, February 18, 2009 when my 2.5 year old son Henrywas diagnosed with double ear infections. It was the first time he had ever needed antibiotics in hisshort life, and they seemed to do the trick almost immediately. Henry woke up on Monday, February 23and told me he felt “Wobbly”….

My Heros are my Family

May 22, 2023

My heroes are my family. May 22nd 2011 I started to feel pins and needles on the palms of my hands and bottom of my feet. Woke up on Monday the 23rd starting to get weakness in my legs. After work went to the doctor who sent me home with if your not better my…

My Son, Ethan

May 15, 2023

My 16-year-old son, Ethan, was diagnosed with CIDP in February after several months of nerve issues, including loss of coordination, balance, and the ability to walk and run normally. He has started to see improvements with the prednisone treatment and we are praying that after he finishes his dosing, this disease will be put into…

My Dad is My Hero

May 11, 2023

Every day I am grateful! Why? Because I still have my dad! My dad is my hero, my best friend, my conscience, and most importantly one of my main supporters in life. My life has been a roller coaster and when my dad was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome in 2017, I thought I would lose…

Michele Rusek

May 11, 2023

Michele has walked every step with me. Encouraging me to remain a strong fighter and giving me the strength to get through the bad days. She also celebrates the good days with me. She always puts her personal tasks to the back burner to give me the easiest way to make the most of each…

My Husband, My Hero

May 10, 2023

My husband is my hero. This illness has taken a lot away from me. When I was unable to stand he was my legs, when I was unable to bathe myself,  he bathed me.  I still struggle with basic daily living activities and he is by my side helping with tasks such as getting dressed,…

Ashley Mates

May 8, 2023

My girlfriend Ashely has come a very long way from her diagnosis of CIDP about a year ago. She has made strides and still fights daily with the pain, and shocks, and fatigue, but has kept a powerful and open optimism to get better and it has worked recently regaining some reflexes. She is one…

Jessica, the best daughter

May 8, 2023

When I was diagnosed with GBS in New Mexico, I was not allowed to have visitors throughout my hospital stays due to COVID. My daughter Jessica, who is an RN at Mayo in Eau Claire, WI, followed my journey through video conferences with my doctors, and with me also, of course! I have since moved…

Ann, My Hero in my Darkest Days

May 8, 2023

Ann was with me upon my on-set and was by my side for 11 hours in the emergency room. Ann started a go fund me, which was such a huge help to me financially. Ann watched my dog and cat as well as getting volunteers at work to assist with feeding and letting them out…

My Mom, Debbie

May 5, 2023

My mom is one of the strongest individuals that I know. No matter what is going on, she is doing her best to be active and present in the community. She is constantly there for people and willing to chat and offer any advice that she can. From her days of teaching to now she…

A True Warrior

May 5, 2023

Kadence is my 14 year old daughter diagnosed with GBS 3 different variants she was on a ventilator and paralyzed head down. She is the strongest bravest girl I know! She has accomplished so many milestones since being released on 4/19/23 . She is starting her first day back at volleyball tomorrow she is a…

My Daughter, Sabine

May 5, 2023

When I was diagnosed with GBS, my daughter was newlywed. She had to instantly become a mother to my two foster children, and after 7 months in hospital, become my care giver, OT and cope with her own PTSD. After 3 years I am still bedridden and still need a lot of assistance. My daughter…

Matt

May 5, 2023

Matt was diagnosed with CIDP in late 2021, when he was only 43 years old, and otherwise perfectly healthy. Though he has many very scary and frustrating symptoms, including numbness in his feet, muscle spasms, cramps, weakness, etc., he continues to put his all into his job every day as a 6th-grade teacher and coach….

Super mom with a Cup of Coffee

May 5, 2023

Linda is my mother in law and she has been an angel to me. She has been my nurse, doctor, and pharmacist when it comes to my recovery from GBS. She’s always held my hand when I was afraid and assured me I would get thru any obstacle. She is constantly putting others before her…

Thriving Nine Year Old Girl

May 5, 2023

My daughter was five years old when she was diagnosed with GBS. She was paralyzed from the waist down. She spent one week in the hospital with a 5 day course of IVIG. Upon release, she spent nine months doing intensive occupational and physical therapy, including hippotherapy. She has gone through more in her short…

My Big Brother, My Super Hero

May 5, 2023

My big brother, My Super Hero!!! I remember like 7yrs ago when he was diagnosed with GBS and all the struggles we went through, how he was a super athletic men, to not even being able to talk and completely paralyzed from one day to the other, when the doctors were about to induce him…

Martin Villanueva

May 5, 2023

My sons father was diagnosed with GBS July 16 2022 and has been a fighter ! He has been through so much. No one should ever have to endure so much heartache and pain. And no child should ever have to be without their father or go watch them go through so much pain and…

My Friend, My Hero Lisa

May 5, 2023

Lisa has multiple chronic illnesses including RA, Diabetes Type 1, Osteoarthritis, Fibromyalgia, to name a few. She lives in England and is one of my best friends although I live in the states. Lisa took the time to talk me to sleep on video every night while I was in the hospital when first diagnosed…

My Hero, My Mother

May 3, 2023

My hero is/was my mother, Maria. She recently passed away fighting a severe heart condition, two broken femurs and several other conditions. She taught me to never give up, to complain only when necessary, to smile and always be at my best even in the worst condition. When I was diagnosed with GBS in 1990…

Betty, My Constant Companion

May 3, 2023

My beautiful and sweet girl Betty Grable has been my constant companion and helpmate for the last 4 years. She is a very well trained service dog who helps me in so many ways including, retrieving objects from the floor, opening cabinets, removing my shoes and socks, also she will retrieve my emergency glucose kit…

My Hero, My Mentor, My Shining Role Model

April 28, 2023

Over three decades ago, when I had GBS and needed artificial ventilation, Estelle Benson was the one who told my terrified parents that I would recover. After my recovery, Estelle Benson was the one who invited me to become a volunteer for the Foundation and inspired me to inspire others, something I still do to…

My Heros, My Children

April 28, 2023

Living with CIDP for 28 years has been a long rough journey.  I would not be here today if it weren’t for My Heros. My daughter Emma and my son Tyler.   Both of them have had to grow up with a mom who has been ill. Emma was 4 and Tyler was a newborn when…

Matthew Poslusny

March 1, 2023

I was born with a very mild case of cerebral palsy. It mainly affected the strength and dexterity of my right arm and leg. I was always able to compensate for it and was usually surprised when someone would ask about my limp. Fast forward many years and all of a sudden my left foot…

Rebecca Stein

February 22, 2023

In 2008 I was strong and working out daily at my gym. I enjoyed running and tending to my seven gardens in between working in the pharmaceutical profession and raising my two children. I had noticed what felt like a callus on the pad of my right foot near my toes. It was bothersome and…

Clive Phillips

January 4, 2023

Ajay Singh

December 1, 2022

My Journey through “Guillain Barre Syndrome” (GBS) “It’s nothing serious, few physiotherapy sessions and you’ll be okay,” my GP told me when I started to feel the pain in my toes. Seven days were spent in physiotherapy, and by that time, I was not feeling better, so I gave up and continued with my daily routine….

L’histoire de Patrick

October 4, 2022

Lori Basiege

April 22, 2022

Many of you know me because I have responded to your patient inquiries either by phone, email, or  have conversed with you virtually, at in-person regional meetings or symposia. I have been with the Foundation for seven years, and quite frankly, it has been easier to consult with many of you than for me to…

Bob Whiteside

March 2, 2022

My GBS journey started on April 29th of my 60th year. I received my 2nd COVID vaccine shot the day earlier with no complications. I cut the grass and walked with my wife. I went to work the next day, but didn’t feel right so my boss sent me home. I went to bed figuring…

Jennifer Burgand

February 22, 2022

I have been showing a positive “face” for quite some time now and life hasn’t been exactly rainbows and butterflies the past 6 years. Around the same time I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I was having horrible cramps in my right calf & toes. Doctors kept saying “You’re so active. You’re just dehydrated. Eat…

Pete Morro

September 1, 2021

Early 2016, I noticed numbness in the soles of my feet, someone suggested “cool laser “treatments. After 15 appointments with no results, I gave it up. I was kayaking, riding my bike along trails, playing with a band. I was 81 years old. My wife and I celebrated our 25th anniversary on 8 August 2017…

Trevor

June 24, 2021

In November 2011, I experienced a severe case of food poisoning that led me to seek medical help. The doctor prescribed an antibiotic, which initially helped alleviate my symptoms, but the pain and fever returned once the antibiotic course was completed. I was then given another antibiotic and tried to resume my normal routine. One…

Sara Ganem

June 14, 2021

On August 30th, 2019, my life changed forever. I woke up that morning and collapsed, and suddenly was unable to walk. Within 24 hours, I was paralyzed from the neck down. Since that day, I have been battling Guillain-Barré Syndrome. GBS paralyzed me from the neck down, put me in the ICU and caused me…

Beto Dávalos

June 14, 2021

My name is Beto Dávalos, I am 21 years old and I am from Ecuador. I am a trail runner, at least, that is the word with which I usually introduce myself, although I feel that it does not pay 100% homage to everything I do. I practice andinism (mountaineering), trekking and I am also…

Christopher Cross Research Fund

May 27, 2021

CLICK HERE to Join Christopher Cross in Supporting Research

“Diagnosis is Not Destiny” Barry Shore

April 30, 2021

Forever Grateful for my Husband

January 14, 2021

When I first got sick in 2014, I knew that my life and the life of my husband would change forever.  I wasn’t sure of exactly how that would be yet.  As time went on, we couldn’t be spontaneous anymore, travel had to change and my accommodations were different.  Everything took a tremendous amount of…

My Fiancé, My Hero

December 9, 2020

I would absolutely adore and be incredibly grateful to honor my fiancé, Adam Coleman, as an amazing, loving, and supportive caregiver. As of my GBS diagnosis in January 2018, I am still trying to process life in my “new normal” and have been battling with incessant, overwhelming, and life-changing residual effects from my diagnosis. My…

Caregiver Q&A – Elsa Oliver, Richmond Liaison and Walk & Roll Chair

December 2, 2020

What is the most rewarding part of being a caregiver? The most rewarding part of being a caregiver has been watching our relationship blossom into something deeper than love. Taking care of someone you love is very difficult but, the bond we have now is like nothing I have ever known and he knows that…

Puja Shankar

October 9, 2020

“I need to be admitted, I think I have Guillain Barre Syndrome” I stated confidently and somewhat shakily to the receptionist in front of the Emergency Department; this was ironically the same department I rotated in a month prior to my current presentation. She looked at me quizzically and I showed her my employee badge….

Merrilyn Macurak

August 26, 2020

Merrilyn Macurak, Southeast Regional Director & Walk & Roll Chair tells her story to Tim Beisiegel, on the Focus on Forward Podcast. Listen as she shares her experience with GBS, finding support and an “extended family” at the Foundation, and how she tries to stay active and positive every day.

Living Each Day to the Fullest

July 28, 2020

By Patrick Bohan Over 13 years I have had nine neurologists evaluate and retake my medical history. Whenever diagnosis is elusive, having a medical history retaken by different doctors is not a bad idea. After all, a fresh set of eyes may uncover important information. [1] Over those 13 years I have had 4 different…

Filip’s Story

July 15, 2020

I am Filip and I have CIDP. The first real symptoms I had of CIDP were when I had difficulty standing up straight without any support. This rose a concern and after several tests it was determined that, I had either Guillian Barre Syndrome or CIDP. After two rounds of a five-day cycle of immunoglobulin,…

Marion’s Story

July 15, 2020

I am Marion and I was diagnosed with GBS. It all started when I was cleaning the house and the feeling of pins and needles took over my body. By the next morning, when I went to the doctors, my fingers and toes were completely numb. After several tests, different diagnoses, and numerous doctor appointments,…

Babafemi’s Story

July 15, 2020

My name is Babafemi and I was diagnosed with GBS in 2011. In a matter of two days, I started feeling numbness in my fingertips, toes, and weakness in my knees. Within a week, I was paralyzed. I was diagnosed with GBS at a time in my life that was supposed to be happy. I…

Alejandra’s Story

July 15, 2020

My name is Alejandra and I have CIDP. It all started in 2006 with a bad flu. I was working 16 hours days and was having problems with my legs. I pushed through and it wasn’t until my hands became paralyzed that I went to the emergency room and was possibly diagnosed with Guillain Barre…

Juan Antonio’s Story

July 15, 2020

In 1998, my sister and I were both diagnosed with GBS. After a misdiagnosis and three hospitals visits, it was finally determined we had Guillain-Barre Syndrome. At the time, no one knew about GBS. You would hear of people who recovered and people who have not. The internet was very new at the time so…

Adrienn’s Story

July 15, 2020

My illness all started with muscle stiffness and numbness in my legs. By the time, I received a lumbar puncture; I was already in critical condition and placed on a respiratory machine. Everyone thought it was a spinal disc herniation and that the condition would never become critical. Little did they know that they were…

Crystal’s CIDP Story

July 15, 2020

My name is Crystal and I have CIDP. My journey with CIDP started a year before I was diagnosed with memory loss and severe fatigued. At the time, I was working a job that required a lot of energy and I was finding myself really struggling with my everyday tasks. I chalked it up to…

James Babington Smith

July 15, 2020

It all started when I thought I was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre Syndrome many years ago. After making a reasonable recovery, I continued on to live my life to the fullest only to find out that my health issues had just begun…Fifteen years later, I started falling and experiencing severe pains in my back and legs….

Chen Rosenberg

July 15, 2020

My journey with CIDP begin in 2006 when I returned home from a trip in South America. Two months after returning, I began walking a little strange and noticed I was getting weaker and more tired. I soon saw a neurologist, which began the 10-month diagnosis of CIDP. I did all the routine tests and…

Mia’s GBS|CIDP Story

July 15, 2020

Growing pains was my first diagnosis after I was experiencing weakness and tingling in my feet. I was shocked that growing pains was the reason behind the pain I was experiencing. After going away for a weekend, the pain become unbearable and I was beginning to not be able to walk. I was rushed to…

Children with Guillain-Barré Syndrome

July 15, 2020

I was just five years old when I was diagnosed with GBS. It all started when I began falling and not being able to walk properly. I was an active five-year-old so my parents knew right away something wasn’t right. I was later taken into the hospital and a few days later diagnosed with GBS….

Isabella Herman – My Story

July 14, 2020

In March of 2013, I was a normal kid. Having just turned 10 years old, I was a ball of energy: always dancing and running around. My dreams of being a principal dancer were in full swing, and I was sure nothing could take that away from me. In April of that same year, this…

My Mom has CIDP – Marie and Louise’s Story

March 23, 2020

GBS Helped me Find Myself – Cheryl’s Story

March 23, 2020

Saishna Budhathoki: #nevergiveup

February 3, 2020

“Will power and strong determination in our mind and heart can achieve every success that seems impossible” – Saishna Budhathoki Today, we share a story from Nepal. Meet 18-year-old, Saishna Budhathoki, a young woman who shares why she believes, “smiling really heals the greatest edge of pain.” I began my battle with Guillain-Barre Syndrome when…

A Little Support Can Go a Long Way

September 16, 2019

“Volunteers from the GBS|CIDP Foundation, visited my friend Morgan in the hospital. I know that made all the difference in her recovery. She was very motivated and in very good spirits after the visit! We are so grateful!” – Virginia Vassalotti We are happy to introduce, friend and advocate, Virginia Vassolotti, and GBS patient Morgan…

Meet Alex Biaggi

May 8, 2019

“When you love something you do it until you can no longer do it.” After enduring a young adulthood (1996 -2001) of spinal stenosis, back surgeries (including a laminectomy and spinal fusion), and multiple knee surgeries, alongside many painful periods of recovery, Alex Biagi was back in shape and back to his old normal –…

Judy Jacobs

January 7, 2019

Judy Jacobs is one of “the original 8” – a passionate circle of 8 people lead by the most passionate of all, the founder of GBS|CIDP Foundation International, Estelle Benson, and a group whom Dr. Arthur Asbury from the University of Pennsylvania, deemed as “the missing piece.”  This summer at the GBS|CIDP headquarters in Conshohocken,…

Meet CIDP Patient and New Orleans Iron Man, Trent Fielder

December 6, 2018

Recently we had the privilege to connect with Trent Fielder and learned why and how he continues to challenge himself both physically and mentally, and why he believes,  “We all have the ability to inspire if we live our lives with our spirit first.” Here’s what he had to say: When were you diagnosed? 12/16/2011…

Meet Hala Ahmed

August 7, 2018

“Everyone of us experiences GBS in a different way, but what we primarily share is our determination.” – Hala Ahmed Learn how this pediatric dentist from Egypt coped with a GBS diagnosis, from onset to treatment, to finding the support she needed at the GBS|CIDP Foundation International.

Overwhelmed with Gratitude

May 28, 2018

By Brian O’Connell May 23, 1998, I was preparing for my last cross country commute, ending an era that started six years before, when I was hired into my dream job, as a pilot for a major US airline. With a three year layoff, two years of a coast to coast commute and the hardships…

A GBS Hero from the Peace Corps

May 24, 2018

By John Pielemeier It was Christmas Eve, 1967, and I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Katiola, a small town upcountry in the Ivory Coast. I began to feel ticklish sensations running up and down my legs. I instinctively knew something was seriously amiss and got up in the middle of the night to find…

Making Lemonade from Lemons

May 22, 2018

By Julie Zarou My son Taylor was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS) in June of 2016. At the time he was 7 years old and school was about to end for the year. He was so excited for summer to begin. He was hospitalized for 3 weeks and misdiagnosed with acute lyme disease and post-strep…

My Daughter and GBS Hero

May 20, 2018

By Diann Mayweather Her name is Dr. Diana Nicole Mayweather, a Ph.D. Chemistry graduate from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. Diana is my daughter and this is her journey with GBS through my eyes. I would like to start with some background information on Diana. She lived in Chicago, Illinois until graduation from Northwestern (June…

My seven year old son is my HERO

May 18, 2018

By Felicia Jones It was around Halloween of 2017 when we noticed Benjamin was more fatigued, cranky and just not acting himself. He would sleep as soon as he came home from school and was complaining of aches and pains, mainly located in his legs. Originally we thought the clumsiness and leg pain was a…

My Hero and Caregiver

May 16, 2018

By Arthur Gause My ‘Honor Your Hero’ story is about my wife Dee. She is my caregiver. By the time I was diagnosed with CIDP in 2015, I was wheelchair-bound. Getting an appointment with a Neurologist was a challenge. It took 5-6 months after onset of the symptoms to see one. Because of her hard…

I Will Tryout for Cheerleading Again!

May 13, 2018

By Nancy Mallard At the age of 14, and just starting her freshman year in high school, our daughter Rachel came down with GBS. October of 2015 is a time that will always be etched in my mind. She was on a ventilator for 3 weeks, spent a month in MUSC Children’s Hospital, a month…

Life is Good

May 10, 2018

By Robert Neuenschwander My hero is my wife, Kathleen, who has also been my caretaker. CIDP hit me in September of 2013 and within two and a half months I was almost totally paralyzed. I could move my head and neck but nothing else. Kathy got a lift and slings and every morning got me…

“It’s Only Rare Until It’s You”

May 9, 2018

By Kenneth Curitore My hero is my partner Raymond Lopez. Raymond is a 1988 GBS survivor who following his long 10 month recovery, regained control of his life and in doing so today recognizes the importance by example of helping fellow GBS/CIDP survivors. Through his dedication and work as a liaison for GBS/CIDP Foundation International…

My Hero, Husband and Soulmate

May 7, 2018

By Linda Pulver My hero is more than a hero he is my angel, soul mate, my husband, Russell Barber. On January 2, 2004 just after turning 60, I started having GBS symptoms. By January 7, I was in an ambulance being transported from Hornell, NY to Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY. That was…

My Husband is my Greatest Cheerleader

May 4, 2018

By Laura Finley My hero is my husband, Michael. I was diagnosed with GBS in May of 2017. We live an active lifestyle and I was an avid runner training for a marathon when I became suddenly ill. I am a RN by profession and I knew something was terribly wrong with me. I went…

Mom will always be my Hero

May 3, 2018

By Christine Robinson My story goes back to 1965, when I was 5 years old. I am told I walked up to my mother and she was talking to her mother and asked, “Is Christine’s face supposed to be different on one side?” That observation lead me to being hospitalized for what they thought was…

A True Fighter!

May 2, 2018

By Ileana Yau On July 17, 2013 I wrote to the GBS Foundation requesting information as my father was diagnosed with GBS at 87 years of age. Today I am writing to “Honor Your Hero” as my father has fought and recovered very well! He made enormous efforts to recover and he did everything he…

My Wife, Caregiver and GBS Hero

May 1, 2018

By Jim Yadlon My name is Jim Yadlon and I am Recovered GBS patient. My battle with GBS was a long time ago, 1973-74. But one never forgets the gist of time with GBS even though I have forgotten some of the smaller details. One important detail that I will never forget is the love…

My Dad is My Hero

April 27, 2018

By Chelsea Ray My Hero is my Dad. He is a hard working police officer and Christian man. He has always been by my side supporting me and taking care of me whether it’s driving me to the doctor, picking up my medications, or helping me with anything else that I need. When I was…

Nancy Di Salvo’s Story

March 22, 2018

Meet GBS member Nancy  DiSalvo, a tireless international volunteer for the GBS|CIDP community, and learn why she feels “each small accomplishment is a major victory.” We sat down with Nancy at our 2017 International Liaison Meeting in Amsterdam. Here’s what she shared about her experience with both GBS, and CIDP. The morning of November 8,…

Paige Duffy’s Story

February 16, 2018

A New Outlook on Life 2016 was the most memorable year of my life. I had finally finished high school, I had gotten my first car, my first job, and my mum’s business was thriving. This year was also when I had been diagnosed with GBS. What had started as an amazing year ended as…

Karani Kinyua’s Story

January 30, 2018

“You are not your legs.” – Karani Kinyua. Meet the first member of our International Volunteer series, Karani Kinyua from our GBS Chapter meeting in Kenya. Listen to Karani’s story of perseverance and resilience in the face of adversity as he battled GBS (taped at our 2017 international liaison meeting in Amsterdam).

Michael Coleman’s Story

August 8, 2017

“My name is Dr. Gupta, and I am a neurologist. You have a rare condition called Guillain-Barré Syndrome. I am going to be honest with you: there is a very real chance you will not survive the week. I am admitting you to ICU, we need to act fast.” This was March 26th, 2016, the third time in…

Tom’s Story

May 2, 2017

94 days. I had gone 36 years since I last spent the night in the hospital. That all changed in 2015. I had been infused about a 100 times since 2013 at the Mayo Clinic. But, I just wasn’t right. Shooting a basketball on Christmas Day 2014 I lost my balance and fell to the…

Alan’s Story

December 9, 2016

I am not sure where to start with my GBS journey, so I will begin where my family’s life was changed forever.  It was Memorial Day weekend 2013; I had just got back from a week’s vacation to Destin, Florida.  I was sitting on my dock watching the grandkids ride their jet ski.  I was…

Corbin’s Story

October 11, 2016

My name is Corbin. I’m fifty-six years old, I’ve been married for thirty-three years, have two grown and successful sons, a successful daughter in law, two grandchildren and a dog named Luke. In May of 2012, I was an executive engineer in charge of a global team of scientists, engineers and technicians who developed technical…

Christa’s Story

August 17, 2016

Hi, my name is Christa and I am 27 years old, and my journey started in 2013.  I had started a new job and noticed intense fiery pain in both my arms.  Instantly I thought, “maybe it’s carpal tunnel” and so my long arduous trips to the doctor began.  Eventually I was sent to a…

Alethea’s Story

July 21, 2016

In 2011, I was stronger and healthier than I had ever been in my life.  My youngest son, Benjamin, had been diagnosed with leukemia late in 2009, and by mid-2010, I had stress eaten to my highest weight ever, and my husband and I decided that for my health and well-being, starting an exercise routine…

Debbie’s Story

May 16, 2016

My name is Debbie Buckley and my GBS story started 6 year’s ago in February of 2010.  I was a very healthy active 53 year old mom of 3 grown sons.  I exercised on a daily basis, ate healthy and really worked hard at trying live a healthy lifestyle.  I always assumed that if you…

Kelly’s Story

April 13, 2016

In my time at the Foundation I have had the honor of compiling & sharing your stories of unwavering strength & resilience in your personal journeys. If it’s okay – today I’d like to share mine with you. How do you measure the quality of your life? Is it in the experiences? Your monetary value…

Mary’s Story

March 17, 2016

In 1978, my husband Dave and I were living in Germany and we had three young children, Paul 3 years old and our twins Jeremy and Matthew who were only 10 months old.  At that time, I was struck with a rare virus which drastically changed our lives. Because of this virus traveling throughout my…

Amanda’s Story

February 1, 2016

My name is Amanda Guerrero.  Back in 2011, I was 24 years old, was living in an apartment with a friend in Santa Monica, and just starting my career as a Neonatal Intensive Care nurse at UCLA Medical Center.  I was in the prime of my life.  This was all about to change.  On November…

Allen’s Story

January 4, 2016

Chapter 1 – 4th of July, No Asbury Park On the 4th of July weekend in the summer of 2013, I woke up extremely tired with leg pain. Being tired was nothing new to me. I make frequent trips to Asia, typically at least nine times a year so jet lag is pretty much a…

Bridget’s Story

December 5, 2015

On the night of November 16, 2012 I was driving an hour south of my hometown to a Carrie Underwood concert.  During the drive my feet began to feel tingly, like they were falling asleep.  The entire night through the concert I tried to wake my feet up, but no luck.  Foolishly, I thought this…

Chris’s Story

November 5, 2015

One morning in June I woke up and the last two fingers on my right had were numb.  Like most people I thought that my fingers would “wake up”.  The next morning the last two fingers on my left hand were numb, again I thought they would “wake up”.  Unfortunately they did not.  I called…

Widy’s Story

October 7, 2015

My name is Aledawi Figueroa, but everybody calls me Widy. I am from Isabela, Puerto Rico. I’m currently 34 years old.  I am happily married with my husband Obeth Soto.  We have 2 children, Alanis Valeria who is 7 and Obeth Julián who is 1 year old.  I studied Business Administration, majoring in Industrial Management…

Ann’s Story

September 22, 2015

Guillain Barre in 1996 By Ann Brandt Things in the world of GBS have changed since my adventure in 1996-97. I had been grading papers all afternoon, rubbing my neck and right shoulder every few minutes. Thinking I needed some exercise and time away from my desk, I set out on a brisk two mile…

Bob’s Story

May 6, 2015

BREAKING OPEN Bob Shea’s Story Life can break you or it can break you open. It is one of my favorite sayings, and it is something everyone who has suffered from Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS) knows well. I was diagnosed with GBS on September 19, 2002, and I endured a series of physical challenges: total paralysis;…

Sibylle’s Story

March 13, 2015

My story started while I was vacationing in Thailand. I was 26 years old and it was my first trip all alone. Peter, an old college friend of mine, lived there, so I was going to visit him. I wished to see the world and to prove to myself my independence. I arrived in Bangkok…

Kim’s Story

January 7, 2015

Once upon a time, there was a woman who used to live a normal everyday life. Then in November 2008 after my daughter received the flu shot, (at her 9 month check-up) everything came crashing down. Two weeks after her receiving the flu shot, my arms were so weak I almost dropped her down the…

Hailey’s Story

October 2, 2014

“I’ve never seen anything like it,” her daughter’s pediatrician said. Holly was at once shocked and frightened by what she heard. Testing was inconclusive, but a neurologist had a hunch… When your trusted family doctor doesn’t know, anxiety can stop you in your tracks, or it can push you to action. For Holly, she sprang…

Julie’s Story

October 2, 2014

My journey begins in October 1967, the year I was born. I was a child of two college students who wanted nothing but the best for me. Their love for me allowed me to be put up for adoption. Twenty-eight days later, I had a permanent home. My life with CIDP began in December of…

Laura’s Story

October 2, 2014

The old adage “when life gives you lemons, just make some lemonade” has been a byline for Laura Dodd almost her entire life. At the young age of 12, Laura was diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder, CIDP, a condition similar to multiple sclerosis. The result was several years traveling from a wheelchair, to a…

Kyle’s Story

September 23, 2014

On August of 2013, on the 18th, Kyle was engulfed, suddenly, in a fight for his life. An illness that we could not pronounce laid claim on him, and with a velocity and a determination that numbed us, he staggered…staggered….and descended far below the earth. He came to a standstill. Within four days those lungs,…

Alexis’s Story

September 23, 2014

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…

Peggy’s Story

September 23, 2014

From early adolescence, I knew that my destiny in life was to be an independent woman. As a child of the Fifties, that meant, for me, not being dependent on a man for my livelihood or my definition of self. My first summer job was at 14 years old, and I left home for college…

Tyler’s Story

September 23, 2014

Friday, March, 2, 2013 was my last normal day. I had been for a run on my lunch break that day. Saturday, I noticed some weakness/soreness in my legs and didn’t think much of it. On Sunday, my legs were noticeably much weaker. We took a trip to Costco that day. I had my wife…