1. Kirvee
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    Kirvee Contributing Member

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    Paralytic Disease

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Kirvee, Jun 7, 2010.

    This is for my short story, btw.

    I need to know if there's a name for a disease that one becomes afflicted with at a young age that causes loss of mobility in the legs. I haven't been able to find anything, but the main character in my short story has spent almost her entire childhood in a hospital bed unable to play with other kids because she's basically paralyzed from the waist down from an incurrable disease.
     
  2. Anonym
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    Anonym Contributing Member

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    I have no idea but am compelled to ask: does a desease suffice much better than an accident?
     
  3. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    The only things I can think of that occur in children are tumors. Also any kind of trauma to the spinal cord can do that.

    I did some looking around on the internet when you asked this question. I could only find things that were related to tumors. All of the degenerative spinal things I could find were all in adults or older children.

    I had a benign spinal cord tumor and know a lot about all that if you have questions pertaining to that or what it's like to not be able to walk. I can walk now but I couldn't for a time.

    http://www.merckusa.com/mmhe/sec06/ch093/ch093a.html
    http://www.drmckinzie.com/chiropractic.html

    Those are two links to color coded charts on which parts of the spinal correspond to different body parts. Hope that helps. I'll let you know if I run across anything else.
     
  4. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    Oh! Just thought of something. I've heard advanced lyme disease can cause nervous system issues. I don't know if it can cause paralysis but it can cause a tremendous amount of pain.
     
  5. Anonym
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    Anonym Contributing Member

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    Advanced lime desease at a young age? Possible i guess.

    nothing yet... huntington's takes awhile i think.. hmm

    Spina bifida?
     
  6. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    I hear it can get pretty bad just within a year of having gotten it. I'm not sure about spina bifida. To google!!!
     
  7. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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  8. Anonym
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    Anonym Contributing Member

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    Lime desease sounds pretty gnarly, I wouldn't doubt it.

    Lol, so my wanton guess ended up being viable? good job on the research, im too lazy :p
     
  9. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    It is. I've heard some stories.

    Haha yes it did. Thanks. :)
     
  10. themistoclea
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    themistoclea Member

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    How about a parasite lodging its larvae somewhere in the brain, I have read about some species that cause various stages of paralysis, but cannot be removed due to their risky position.
     
  11. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    That's interesting I've never heard of that. I lack the stomach to research brain parasites though.. lol You're on your own with this one, Kirvee. :p
     
  12. Anonym
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    i got the vibe the OP was looking for a relatively mundane, demure cause of paraplegia, but i could be mistaken. brain parasites sound plenty interesting
     
  13. Anonym
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    Anonym Contributing Member

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    lol, no prob. lucky guess. you're welcome
     
  14. Kirvee
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    Kirvee Contributing Member

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    @Anonym: The idea for my short story is older than all my novel ideas (because it was inspired by the song "Ordinary Day", which I first heard when I was about 8 or 9). Originally the girl was gonna be in a hospital anyway, but I didn't start thinking about a reason until recently.

    I have thought about it being an accident, but she gets healed at the end of the story so it had to be an illness that baffles all known medicine and even the best doctors.

    @Terra: I looked at the spina bifida info, but that doesn't really fit exactly...

    Because the girl was able to use her legs until she was five, which is when she contracted some disease that made her legs become paralyzed. When the story takes place she is fourteen.

    A tumor sounds like it may work. If it's in a place that not only causes her legs to be paralyzed but makes it too risky for any doctors to try and remove it, then that sounds like it may very well work.

    I have a friend with lyme, though, so I'll also ask her if she knows if advanced lyme disease causes paralysis.

    The main thing I'm looking for is any paralytic disease that can't be cured by regular means, but can through miracles.

    @Mistoclea: Eeeeeehhhhh, brain parasites could work, but the idea makes me a bit sqeemish as well...
     
  15. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    It sounds like a tumor is your best bet. There are several kinds. The one I had was a benign ependymoma. It's extremely rare and usually occurs in children but can occur in adults. Doctors said they think I'd had mine at least since I was ten. They are slow growing. Chemo is very hit and miss, as is radiation. Surgery is generally what they do for it. Though there are many instances where it's too risky to get all the tumor.

    There are three different types of ependymoma. Most aggressive is the brain one, the one I had just sits on top of the spinal cord it's the second most aggressive, there is one that entwines itself in the spinal cord which is least aggressive but most difficult to treat. Ependymomas originate from a nerve cell. I believe it's from the membrane that surrounds a nerve. My doctors said its genetic. And that I "hit the genetic lottery" because they are so unusual.

    It's a miracle I can walk and that I'm not in constant severe pain. I had two surgeries and radiation to my spine. I have an MRI every three months to monitor it. There are still teeny bits of it left but they haven't done anything in over a year. And I feel it's over with. :) It's not like malignant tumors. It doesn't ever go into remission. It's something you have to monitor the rest of your life. The more time that goes by without anything happening the better your chances are it will stay dormant.

    It depends on the doctor, the tumor, and the person as to the outcome. I've heard very few stories with happy endings for people that had a tumor like this. Most people are on pain pumps or can't walk without assistance or can't walk at all. I had the best doctor in that field working on me and a LOT of prayer. I can give more details if you want to go in that direction for it. I wasn't sure if you wanted to or not. So sorry if I over shared. :p Even if you use a different kind of tumor they are all essentially the same in the pain and damage they do to a person's spine. Since I have firsthand experience I thought I could help. :)
     
  16. Anonym
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    idk how i can help ya really but this:
    i lol'd. what kind of question is that? i doubt there's much research done on what deseases are curable thru miracles and which are not. seems a little intangible. isn't a miracle in that case the cure of an incurable desease by non-medical means? that basically leaves every incurable desease there is open to consideration

    i could be misunderstanding you but srsly, i needed a good laugh XD. not makin fun of ya

    i wish i could help more. definitely sounds like terra knows what she's talkin about. good luck
     
  17. Kirvee
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    Kirvee Contributing Member

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    @Anonym: That was a bit mean...

    What I meant was that she has something that is so incurable her parents were commissioned to let her live in the hospital so they could study it and try to find a cure. But one night she has a dream where she meets a boy. After going on a short dream adventure with him, when she wakes up she finds her legs are able to move and the doctors are baffled.

    I intend to leave it open to discussion on who/what the boy is. The story itself is meant to be metaphysical in nature.

    @Terra: Sounds like you would like this story, then :). That does sound helpful, though. I think I will go with what you're suggesting :-D.
     
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  18. Anonym
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    I wasn't trying to be. The way you worded it was genuinely humorous to me. I'm kind of a dick, sorry. Your synopsis clarified what you meant pretty well at any rate, well done.

    The methodology of your miracle seems less important to me than the illness itself. Miracles are by nature relatively ineffable; specifics can be played with later. 2 of your better choices (as vague as they are) are either a well-known, overtly incurable illness, or something rather mysterious that would lend to the plausibility of a 'miraculous' recovery. There's a lot of conditions out there that are about as well understood as miracles. I"m sure there's one that would fittingly compliment her recovery. a tumor sounds more and more fitting actually. unless it's nuerological, paraplegia does seem to imply a spinal issue

    Good luck.
     
  19. Kirvee
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    Kirvee Contributing Member

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    @Anonym: Ah, I see. No hard feelings then!

    *nodnods to everything else you said*
     
  20. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Polio (poliomyelitis) used to be such a disease. There has been a vaccine for decades now, so polio has been considered no longer a threat for quite some time, but lately it has begun to reappear due to lapses in vaccination.

    The nerve damage caused by a polio infection is irreversible, so any recovery from paralysis caused by polio would be miraculous.
     
  21. Anonym
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    Contracted during the family vacation to [developing nation], eh?

    Does she have to be a paraplegic, or just bed-ridden?

    This sounded interesting: Myasthenia Gravis
    Basically full body muscle weakness and an apparent cause of paraplegia. Relatively mysterious. More prevelant in women. Incurable as far as i can tell. worth a shot
     
  22. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    why does it have to be a disease and not an injury?

    regardless of the cause, no one would remain hospitalized just because they're partially paralyzed... they'd just be at home in a wheelchair... no one could afford a permanent hospital stay and no hospital could offer such long term care, either...

    the only place that might, would be a private facility for the handicapped, but with a family to care for the child, that wouldn't make any sense, either...
     
  23. Anonym
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    Anonym Contributing Member

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    I believe a disease is necessary to explain why doctors would want to keep her at the hospital to study the condition. Great minds think a like, lol. But you're right, i imagine the issue of financing and all might take some research to get around. idk much aboot that
    A prolonged hospice situation might rationalize a seemingly indefinite stay, but even that's complicated and possibly darker than what Kirvee was going for.

    this is kind of fun, ha
     
  24. Kirvee
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    Kirvee Contributing Member

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    @Cog: Hmmm, that sounds like a good candidate as well...

    @Maia: I already explained why it has to be a disease. She needs to have a reason for the hospital to have commissioned her parents to let her stay in hospital care while they studied whatever she has. This way she was literally robbed of a childhood because she got whatever the disease is when she was five, and because of that she's envious of the children her age and younger that she can see playing in the city park/playground conveniently viewable from her hospital bedroom window.

    Her parents didn't really abandon her to the hospital because they do visit her almost everyday and bring her gifts and such. She has a tutor to make up for the schooling she couldn't get.

    Finances aren't an issue because the hospital commissioned her parents. Basically: "Let your daughter stay here for some time so that we may study her disease and maybe, just maybe find a cure for not only her but other kids with what she has. In return, you won't have to pay anything."

    Any extra expenses from that are covered by her rich grandmother.
     
  25. Anonym
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    Anonym Contributing Member

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    Ah, the proverbial rich grandmother/father/uncle. Who could survive a debilitating, incurable disease without her? ;P
    Sounds like you've got that much pretty figured out.
     

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