Celine Dion Shines Light on Rare Neurological Disorder

Celine Dion not too long ago introduced on Instagram that she would pause her profession due to her struggles with Stiff Person Syndrome (SPS) – a particularly uncommon autoimmune situation.
“It’s actually one in 1,000,000” who will likely be recognized with Stiff Person Syndrome, says Derek Smith, MD, a neurologist with Hartford HealthCare’s Ayer Neuroscience Institute, primarily based in Norwich.
Dion shared that she had been affected by muscle spasms earlier than being recognized with the illness, which is usually misdiagnosed.
“I’ve been coping with issues with my well being for a very long time, and it’s been actually tough for me to face these challenges and to speak about every part that I’ve been going by means of,” Dion, 54, stated tearfully in an Instagram video.
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What is Stiff Person Syndrome?
Stiff Person Syndrome is an autoimmune sickness primarily based within the central nervous system, Smith says.
It is usually misdiagnosed as Parkinson’s illness, a number of sclerosis, fibromyalgia, psychosomatic sickness, or anxiousness and phobia. It could cause a stiffening of the muscle mass within the torso and legs, and can even trigger painful muscle spasms.
Can or not it’s cured?
There is not any treatment however there’s a therapy that may decelerate the situation’s development, Smith notes. It includes eliminating the white blood cells (known as B cells) within the physique which are producing the antibodies that trigger the dysfunction.
Muscle relaxers are additionally usually prescribed to scale back spasms and relieve ache.
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What are the warning indicators of a neurological illness?
It might be difficult to diagnose a neurological dysfunction early on, whether or not or not it’s one thing well-known like a number of sclerosis or one thing uncommon like Stiff Person Syndrome.
Symptoms resembling abrupt change in imaginative and prescient, vertigo, numbness, tingling or weak point, sudden lack of bowel or bladder management, or stability points can point out there’s a neurological concern, Smith says.
“It generally is a downside the place somebody goes on the Internet with their signs and diagnoses themselves with Stiff Person Syndrome,” he stated. “A big a part of what we do right here is consider individuals who have signs and are involved. But I’d quite individuals name us for an analysis than not are available.”
Often after listening to the affected person’s story and conducting a bodily examination it may be decided it’s an inside ear concern or one thing else routine. But if the issue is extra complicated, additional testing will likely be ordered. A mind MRI can diagnose MS, whereas blood assessments can diagnose Stiff Person Syndrome.


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