A 15-year-old Missouri teen has been left blind after being struck by a mysterious disease following a cruise trip.
No eyesight, sense of smell or taste is what #JordynWalker suffered from after coming home from a cruise trip with her family in July 2017. The teen said when she came home she began experiencing stomach pain and bloody stools. “It just went haywire from there,” Walker, 15, told WDAF. “Everything started swelling.” After visiting doctors in North Carolina, officials told the teen that her results were inconclusive and that she may have a sinus infection. When she returned to her hometown in Kansas City, she lost her sense of taste and smell. This prompted her to get more testing by specialists. “Everything came back normal,” her mom, Kendyll Walker, told the news station.
Some time passed, and the symptoms began to disappear, except for the loss of taste and smell. Doctors assured Walker and her family that this would be a “one in a million” issue that would not come back. However, it did come back on Dec. 12, 2018, more severe than before. “My whole face just turned purple and bruised and giant with blood,” Jordyn said. Walker’s emergency room hospital visit turned into a 16-day stay at the University of Kansas. Officials had to do more testing and two surgeries to relieve the swelling from around her eyes. “It was terrifying to watch it happen all over again and knowing that we couldn’t do anything about it,” Kendyll said.
“Doctors believe that the blood flow to the optic nerve was compromised, severely damaging one nerve and completely destroying the other,” according to a GoFundMe page set up in Jordyn’s name. “Her right eye experienced what in the brain would be similar to a stroke, obliterating her optic nerve and causing severe damage to the retina. The substantial pressure in both eyes stretched the optic nerve, completely separating it from her right eye and compromising it beyond repair in the left.” Today doctors still don’t know what caused the illness.
Walker went home from the hospital on Dec. 28, but her family is planning to take her to the Mayo Clinic in upcoming weeks for more assistance. While this has been a heartbreaking time in Walker’s life, she says she is pushing forward. “I’m not going to let this stop me,” she said.