Just three days into her holiday in Spain, this young girl suddenly fell ill and was unable to move. When she was rushed to hospital, the diagnosis was grim.
Kara Dunn, 20, a physiology student at the University of Arizona was traveling through Spain when she experienced a tingling in her extremities and went to bed hoping to wake up feeling fine. But that didn’t happen, and the next day, June 5, 2018, she was unable to move. She was paralyzed.
“I laid there. Paralyzed. Unable to talk and thinking that I would never be able to walk again,” she said according to azcentral. “My heart sunk,” Kara said.
The news outlet reported that Kara’s mother informed Kara’s brother, Ryan Dunn, about his sister’s condition in Spain.
Kara’s speech gets clearer and louder every time we see her. She can move her arms but is entirely paralyzed from the…
Kara’s mother and brother then flew to Spain and were at her bedside three days later.
“I’ve been in ICUs, and nothing prepares you for seeing your family member on a ventilator. Especially someone who’s so strong,” said her brother, Ryan.
Her brother, who also happened to be a second-year medical student at the Mayo Clinic, sought help from one of his neurology professors to write a letter about her condition. He acted as an intermediary between doctors in the United States and Spain.
After a four-hour wait, doctors diagnosed her with Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), an incurable illness where the body’s own immune system attacks the nervous system. Kara was intubated and also treated for pneumonia, adding to the severity of the situation.
Ryan set up a GoFundMe page for Kara, where Ryan wrote: “The cost of the emergency flight back to the United States, general medical expenses, physical therapy and transportation/housing for our family is over $100,000. This is why I am seeking your support.”
Her story later went viral, and the money to bring her home was raised.
Kara was medically airlifted home on June 15, “I can confidently say my older brother saved my life,” she said.
Kara’s doctor, Dr. Christina Kwasnica, is confident she will make a full recovery.
“I can brush my own hair. I can brush my own teeth,” says Kara.
— BarrowNeurological (@BarrowNeuro) July 3, 2018
“Each stride that I make, makes me even more happy,” she continues. “I haven’t been sad or angry or wondered why this happened to me. … The only thing I can do is take out of it what I can get out of it.”
The young lady is on track to become a medical doctor herself, and her experience can only help to enhance her understanding of this debilitating and deadly disease.
Watch the video below: