Guillain-Barré Syndrome shocks local family

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Over the course of just three days, what started as tingling feet led to an airlift to the Neurological Intensive Care Unit at the Mayo Clinic.
That’s where Charlie Theobald is undergoing treatment for Guillain-Barré Syndrome.

“There’s nothing that brings it on, it’s just like throwing a dart into the universe and hitting somebody.”
That’s how John Theobald describes his brother’s sudden diagnosis with Guillain-Barré Syndrome. 

The Mayo Clinic describes it as a rare condition in which the body’s immune system attacks the nerves.

On Friday, May 18th, Charlie Theobald felt a tingling in his feet that he assumed was from a long day at work.

The next day it moved to his hands – and by Sunday, he couldn’t walk anymore.

“For something to be as rare as it is and to happen to probably one of the most athletic, loving members of our family, with two young energetic boys, makes it that much harder,” John said.

According to the CDC, an estimated 3,000 to 6,000 people develop Guillain-Barré  Syndrome annually in the U.S. That’s one of 100,000 people.

For Charlie, his early diagnosis brought him from Trinity’s ICU to the Mayo Clinic where he’s received immunoglobulin treatments – which according to Mayo – prevents the immune system from continuing to attack his nerves.

John said, “He is now stable, which is the first stage of recovery.”
Although Charlie is stabilized and able to somewhat communicate, the question of his recovery is, how long will it be?

“People don’t realize not only the physical damage that something like this can cause, but I also want to bring awareness to the financial damage that something like this can cause as well,” John added. “We could be looking at a life-time of physical therapy and he’s got two boys, 6 and 3 that only know their dad as hunting, fishing, playing baseball, softball, catch, you name it.”

According to the CDC, another treatment could be plasma exchange, and that most people do fully recover.

Click here to help Charlie’s family with the extensive medical bills, or here to donate to the GBS/CIDP Foundation International. 
There is also an account set up at US Bank under ‘Theobald Medical Fund.’

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