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4-yr-old Iowa girl paralyzed after car trip to Disneyland - autoimmune encephalitis suspected

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  • 4-yr-old Iowa girl paralyzed after car trip to Disneyland - autoimmune encephalitis suspected
    Mysterious illness stuns vacationing family
    Thursday, August 21, 2014
    By Dana Larsen, Northwest Iowa Publishing

    STORM LAKE -- For a Storm Lake family, a happy family vacation has turned into a medical nightmare.

    Cesar and Karina Jacuinde were taking their 4-year-old daughter on a car trip to Disneyland, fitting in some family time before their only child was to start school.

    Starting back home to Storm Lake, Jazzelle became ill and began vomiting. At first the couple thought it was just car sickness or the over excitement of the travel, but the next day, Jazzelle clearly was not bouncing back.

    She had a fever, was still throwing up, and the usually-active child didn't even want to get out of bed.

    The Jacuindes stopped in a town where they had relatives, and went straight to the emergency room at the local hospital.

    Jazzelle complained of a tummy ache, but a CT scan of her abdomen found nothing unusual. Doctors brought the fever under control and sent the family on their way. She became even more sick as they were driving away. Soon, with a 103-degree fever raging, they headed back to the emergency room, for antibiotics and an IV.

    Jazelle was crying in pain, but the doctors were stumped. Again they were sent home, told that if she didn't wake up well, they would need to rush to a major children's hospital in Salt Lake City
    She is suffering from encephalitis, inflamation of the brain, and myelitis, infection of the spinal cord ... but why?

    Doctors have been chasing a mystery virus they think may be disrupting Jazzelle's immune system. They have tested for and ruled out West Nile, lyme disease, mono, chicken pox and others. They've done a spinal tap, and many blood tests.

    The latest theory is that she is suffering from some form of a ghost virus triggering an auto immune reaction..
    UPDATE #4
    1 DAY AGO
    I have talked to Cesar again tonight and Jazzelle is taking baby steps forward. She has smiled and is moving her arms a bit. The doctors are cautiously optimistic that their treatment plan will work. However they are a long way away from feeling comfortable with how things are going.

    The doctors believe that this is an autoimmune disease and they have no concrete evidence on what has triggered this. The latest theory is that this may have been caused by her receiving vaccinations in preparation for school. Everything is coming back negative as far as bacteria and viruses are concerned. They continue to search for the exact autoimmune disease that is causing Jazzelle to be sick...
    There was a case last year of a boy from New York who died during a trip to Disneyland from what was later diagnosed as strep:

    New York teen gets sick and dies in California from unknown fever illness - invasive streptococcal infection
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