Did You Know | Health

After A Cruise, A Mystery Disease Left This Teen Blind

Jordyn's Cause Funding Research and Recovery - Facebook / Pixabay

Doctors say a teen from Missouri will never see again after contracting a disease that they still can't identify or explain.

Jordyn Walker, 15, went on a cruise vacation with her family in 2017. Walker was reportedly in good health before and during the trip, but started noticing stomach pain when she returned home.

"It just went haywire from there," Walker told local news station WDAF. "Everything started swelling."

Jordyn Walker
Walker (at right) was healthy before returning from a cruise vacation, according to her family.Jordyn's Cause Funding Research and Recovery - Facebook

Walker was treated by doctors in North Carolina, and at first it seemed like she had an ordinary sinus infection. But soon, Walker could not taste or smell anything. Her doctors chalked her condition up to a "one in a million" reaction and said she would recover.

As months went on, her condition never improved and eventually took a turn for the worse. Her face swelled and swelled, until the pressure damaged her optic nerves, eventually leaving the teen permanently blind.

Mystery Disease
Walker was hospitalized last month after her condition worsened.Jordyn's Cause Funding Research and Recovery - Facebook

After she spent 16 days in the hospital last month, Walker's doctors still have no idea what caused her illness. The best guesses so far include an autoimmune disease, vasculitis (a chronic disease that damages blood vessels), or a rare bacterial infection, but none of these diagnoses have been proven yet.

Walker's family says she was been forced to stop enjoying archery and photography because of the lasting damage to her eyes, but that hasn't dampened her spirit.

"I'm not going to let this stop me," Walker was quoted as saying.

Walker's family celebrate her release from the hospital last week:

December 28th, 2018: Jordyn was finally released from KU Pediatric ICU! 🎉 🎊

Posted by Jordyn's Cause Funding Research and Recovery on Monday, December 31, 2018

With no answers yet, Walker's family are raising money to continue researching her case and paying her medical bills. They've also listed her symptoms on the fundraiser page, in the hopes that a doctor somewhere can diagnose her illness.

"Please spread the word," her fundraiser page reads.

"The human spirit burns brightest when we are united to solve a problem. We can't imagine that her condition is so rare or so unique that it is beyond medical science in 2019."

Her family hope that specialists at the Mayo Clinic can identify the disease that disabled Walker, and find a way to treat it.

You can help pay for Walker's treatment and research by visiting her GoFundMe page.

[H/T: KansasCity.com, Fox News]

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