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Patient Triumph

Patient with Guillain-Barre syndrome becomes a PT rockstar

August 23, 2022

Guillian-Barre syndrome

When Deborah “Deb” Scott came to PT Solutions of Montgomery East in June 2021, she was in a wheelchair and required assistance with most basic tasks. Fortunately, her family was a great support system that helped her with self-care, housework, and travel.

Deb had been diagnosed with Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) when she began therapy with PT Solutions. GBS is an acute inflammatory disease of the peripheral nerves in which the body’s immune system attacks the myelin, which is what protects and insulates the nerves. Those with GBS may experience full-body numbness, cramping in the legs and arms, trouble chewing and swallowing, and breathing.

GBS usually presents itself a few days or weeks after a person has an illness. However, recovery can be slower and incomplete in some cases of GBS, where the severity of the nerve’s inflammation causes deterioration of the entire nerve fibers. A chronic form of this illness may occur with these developing symptoms, resulting in chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP). In Deb’s case, her diagnosis later changed to CIDP.

While the diagnosis and recovery have not been easy, Deb has proven herself as a physical therapy rockstar from day one. Her determination and attitude helped her achieve great results. She progressed from using a wheelchair to a rolling walker to now only using her cane occasionally. She no longer must depend on her support system to help with housework, self-care, and travel. Now, she is independently driving, cooking, cleaning, doing her hair, and more. She can even mow her grass and wash her car!

Deb recently bought a treadmill and added a home gym to continue her workouts outside of therapy. When asked what advice she would give to those currently facing a tough situation or diagnosis, she said, “Never give up. Keep wishing, and never limit yourself.”


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