MG?

Myasthenia Gravis Central Texas Support Group

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Home Our Personal Stories This Is My Story - Nancy Brenner - Caregiver

This Is My Story - Nancy Brenner - Caregiver

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My caregiver experience began when my husband began having difficulty chewing, seeing, and breathing while we were down in the valley of Texas for a couple of weeks in February, 2007.

When we got home, to Austin, and since his eyes were really distressing, we began with our ophthalmologist. Then he went to our family doctor for help.

How very fortunate we were in that he suspected MG after an MRI proved there was no brain tumor.

Alton was seeing double shortly after we got home from the valley, so I became the "Designated Driver", and we tooled around town to all the different tests and doctors until we saw the neurologist, who immediately sent him for the blood test that confirmed he had MG. That, April 9, was the beginning of our MG Battle. During all this time he could not chew and since I wanted to be sure he received proper nutrition, we basically lived on homemade soups and it was necessary that I puree Alton's. I tried to be sure he received plenty of vegetables and protein, and as much variety as possible. I usually used V-8 Juice for the liquid in these soups and it really tastes good as well. Then, of course, ice cream and chocolate always help these situations. (Humor was basic to getting me through all this)

The hardest part of being a caregiver was keeping his spirits up, and helping him see that his was neither the first, nor the worst, case of MG in history. We were so blessed the first Sunday we attended church after we got back to Austin, an older lady in our church came up to us, pointed to Alton, and said, "God told me to tell you that you were going to be all right". We often hung onto this message from God when things were really rough. Many doors were opened for us when things were toughest: for instance, the 2nd time I took him to an ER because of difficulty in breathing, we went to Seton on 38th, and because Seton Northwest was the only place in town that administered IGIV, we managed to begin those treatments the next day. He had 5 consecutive days of IGIV, then one every 30 days. This was the beginning of the turn around for us.

He now has the IGIV treatment every 3 weeks and has regained almost all his strength and stamina. He can drive again, mow grass, see, chew his food, breathe normally now. He is a faithful walker (3 miles) every day and practiced good health habits and I believe that helped him immensely in his fight with MG.