By in Health & Fitness

Misdiagnosed for 30 years

Diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy

A woman was told at the age of 4 years that she had cerebral palsy (the form called spastic diplegia) that causes stiff muscles and for 30 years she needed help with everything. The way she walked was apparently characteristic of this type of cerebral palsy, although scans (CAT and MRI) did not show the characteristic signs.

Lucky Accident

She needed a medication pump inserted but something went wrong with it and she had to see another doctor, who told her she had something else, took a tablet and in 3 days her life had changed around!

Dopa Responsive Dystonia

She actually had Dopa Responsive Dystonia. Cerebral palsy is often caused by damage at birth but this particular form of dystonia is inherited and completely responds to the medication dopamine, which is also used in Parkinson's disease (Michael Fox), even after 50 years!

Read the article here:

Image Credit » by DarkoStojanovic

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rosepetal wrote on April 24, 2015, 12:10 PM

Oh my goodness, 30 years of thinking she had one thing, when she had something else. And yes, that was a lucky accident.

LeaPea2417 wrote on April 24, 2015, 12:14 PM

At least she was diagnosed correctly even though it took so long.

Jacobb9205 wrote on April 24, 2015, 12:28 PM

Wow, that's crazy! Thank god she's getting better now!

MegL wrote on April 24, 2015, 12:34 PM

I think this is how she is looking at it. She says she is not angry and that having spent 30 years unable to do anything for herself, she is now so glad to be able to walk, dress herself, etc that she is just enjoying being able to do these.

WordChazer wrote on April 24, 2015, 3:29 PM

That is an amazing testimony to the power of second opinion medical science.

valmnz wrote on April 24, 2015, 7:06 PM

What a remarkable story. The poor woman has lost so much of her life.

iwrite28 wrote on April 25, 2015, 3:30 AM

OMG! What a nightmare. 30 years of her life wasted.

CoralLevang wrote on April 25, 2015, 1:56 PM

I, like so many of the rest of us with Stage IV Carcinoid Cancer/Neuroendocrine Tumours (NETs), are misdiagnosed for years, as well. I think it's time I start writing more about this. Much more common place than one may think (mis-dx).

carolscash wrote on April 25, 2015, 3:18 PM

It is sad that with the modern technology that we have that we can't seem to get correct diagnosis

Shellyann36 wrote on April 25, 2015, 5:42 PM

Oh my gosh that is horrible that she lived for so long in that condition! Glad the second doctor was able to figure it out. I always recommend a second opinion.

scheng1 wrote on April 26, 2015, 12:25 AM

Fortunately she gets a good doctor, else she will be misdiagnosed for years.

nbaquero wrote on April 26, 2015, 6:01 AM

MegL I do agree with LeaPea2417 the important thing is she was able to find a cure for her condition, in spite of those 30 years.

BarbRad wrote on April 26, 2015, 7:36 PM

I was mistakenly diagnosed with mitrial valve prolapse in the 1980's. For years I took digoxin every day until i moved here and saw another cardiologist in around 2001. He said I didn't have it and changed my medication. From my standpoint both medications stopped the palpitations.

HappyLady wrote on April 27, 2015, 11:56 AM

I am glad she got the right diagnosis in the end. It can be hard when one thing mimics another.

peachpurple wrote on April 28, 2015, 3:57 AM

that is so scary, being mistaken for a sickness that she had. She should have gone for a second doctor

msiduri wrote on April 28, 2015, 9:30 AM

How awful and how wonderful. She certainly has a great attitude about it, though.

Carmelanirel wrote on April 29, 2015, 7:33 AM

I saw that headline, but didn't have time to read the article. What a wonderful surprise for this young woman.

AliCanary wrote on April 30, 2015, 4:04 AM

Wow, so her condition was completely reversed by the medication? It's almost something you could be bitter about, but I know the doctors did the best they could. She must feel like she has a whole new life!

Mommyjen wrote on April 30, 2015, 7:24 AM

Good for her! I like the way she accepted what had happened. She did not bear any grudges against the doctor who misdiagnosed her disease.
Just last month,my doctor said, I had gestational diabetes. It turned out that the laboratory result was not mine. MegL

MegL wrote on April 30, 2015, 9:07 AM

Thank goodness!

VinceSummers wrote on May 1, 2015, 1:39 PM

I'm amazed so many cases of sickness are diagnosed successfully! I mean, think about it. There are SO many illnesses. And many of them share similar symptoms. Doctors are pretty amazing overall in their successful diagnoses.

jiangliu1949 wrote on May 4, 2015, 4:41 AM

She should owe it all to her medication pump that went wrong and running across a medical expert,or else she would live under the shadow of cerebral palsy all the time .

MelissaE wrote on May 18, 2015, 7:21 AM

Wow...I cannot even begin to imagine what that must be like.

ViperGirl85 wrote on May 26, 2015, 8:52 PM

Oh man! I'm glad she was able to find out what was really going on, and I hope she's doing better today!

MaggieD wrote on May 27, 2015, 6:06 PM

I have CP, this was interesting.

shaggin83 wrote on May 28, 2015, 3:12 PM

Wow how terrible that she was misdiagnosed all those years and had to suffer. How wonderful though that now she can take a medicine and is no longer having to have stiff muscles and therapy all the time.

Ruby3881 wrote on May 28, 2015, 7:02 PM

Sometimes it just takes the right doctor to see something others have missed!

paigea wrote on May 31, 2015, 2:36 PM

She was very lucky (and unlucky) to find that medication. My friend has Dystonia; the medication alleviates the symptoms but doesn't completely remove them.

peachpurple wrote on June 2, 2015, 10:13 AM

wow, that stupid doctor should have his license suspended. Luckily the second dr rescued her