“I was an obsessed traveler” says Rehman. “All I ever wished was to explore longitudes and latitudes of earth”
Rehman had few pain relief pills to detach himself from back pain but a few days later he started to feel sluggish. He fell asleep in the car one morning and did not make it out of the garage without his cousin’s help. Then, it started to feel like running a marathon just to lift a spoonful of soup. One day, he tried to comb his hair and realized he couldn’t lift his arm above his shoulder. “At that moment I started to freak out,” he says.
For Abdi Rehman Shekh the worst illness of his life started with spine ache. He is 32 and was looking after his flourishing transport business in Mumbasa, Kenya with his family.
Rehman got so weak that his family had to wheel him into the emergency room in wheelchair. He got diagnosed with a rare infection called Guillain–Barre syndrome, a neurological disorder that can leave people paralyzed for weeks. For Rehman he lost control of his arm.
As there were very few quality hospital in Mumbasa to cure GBS, Rehman’s family bought him here to India for most prudent treatment.
People who come down with Guillain-Barre typically have had some sort of illness a few days or weeks before, like the flu, says Dr. Urvi Samyal, a medical advisor at Treatment Traveler. In many cases the trigger is a bacterial infection. In super rare cases, people have developed GBS after getting certain vaccines.
Rehman was admitted to the Medanta hospital, Delhi and was told to expect a quick decline. His blood was filtered to remove the antibodies attacking his own body. There’s no such cure for Guillain-Barre syndrome. But two type of treatment, that is Plasma exchange (plasmapheresis) and Immunoglobulin therapy, can reduce GSB effect. Rehman was treated with Immunoglobulin therapy. Doctors gave five doses of Immunorel 56/100 ml IV 16 for speed recovery and reduce the severity of the illness in his infected hand.
No matter what the cause, a diagnosis of Guillain-Barre syndrome, or GBS, usually means you are about to go through something really traumatic. You can expect not being able to walk or to talk. Right and timely treatment in intensive care can lead you to normality. But you need to keep hope alive within yourself since no one knows, while the midst of Guilain-Barre, how much will you regain your abilities.
“One of the things to remember in life is positive thinking within us is natural healers of every disease. Even if I can’t travel on my own anymore I’m grateful to God for giving me this new life and new hope.” Rehman says.