Three-year-old Alma can stand on her own two feet again

Alma is a little girl who suffered for three weeks from severe pains in the lower part of her body, to the point that she could no longer stand. Only in the Hillel Yaffe Pediatrics Department was she diagnosed with Guillain–Barré syndrome, and after the correct treatment she began to walk again

For Suha and Muhammad Agbarieh from Umm al-Fahm, these were terrible times which it is unlikely they will ever forget. Their little three-year-old daughter, Alma, complained of pains in her legs, could not sleep at night, and reached the point that she could no longer stand. Previously Alma had suffered from diarrhea, which turned out to have caused the development of Guillain–Barré syndrome.


“This is a neurological disease which usually develops after an infectious illness, when the body’s immune system attacks parts of the nervous system and can cause gradual paralysis. In the majority of cases the symptoms are pain, a feeling of numbness, progressive weakening of the muscles which gets worse over time, beginning in the soles of the feet and spreading to the feet and legs, to the point where someone can no longer walk,” explains Director of the Department of Pediatrics at Hillel Yaffe Medical Center, Dr. Adi Klein.


Alma and her father in the Hillel Yaffe Medical Center Pediatrics Department


The parents related that for three weeks they ran from one doctor to another, with none of them truly investigating or diagnosing what had happened to their daughter, until they reached the Director of the Child Development Institute in Hillel Yaffe, Prof. Muhammad Mahajana, who immediately sent them to the hospital’s Pediatric Emergency Medicine Unit.


“This is the first time our daughter complained of such severe pain. We went through difficult, sleepless, days and nights, with our daughter not stopping crying from pain and unable to stand. If we would have waited a few more days, the paralysis could have got even worse,” notes her mother, Suha.


Once Alma arrived at the Hillel Yaffe Medical Center, she underwent comprehensive testing and the next day had an MRI scan, which diagnosed her situation. She was given medical treatment, and a few days later began to walk again. She is now expected to have physiotherapy to improve her stability and walking.


“I am happy that they finally succeeded in discovering what the child has. My message to other parents is: listen to your heart. If you feel something is wrong, go and seek out more advice. We were lucky to get to Hillel Yaffe in time and after the appropriate treatment, my daughter could stand again,” concludes Suha.


Alma is still hospitalized in Hillel Yaffe’s Pediatrics Department but is expected to soon be released home and continue with physiotherapy until she gets back to herself.

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