Dangerously Sick Teen Who’s Convinced She’s A Dinosaur Gets Diagnosed With Rare Brain Swelling

Ileana is a writer on the Original Content team. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.lucy before

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I was threatened to be sectioned, and had various tests done. It was then requested by a specialist neurologist in Morriston for me to be tested for encephalitis NMDA, as she recognized the symptoms.

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Leading up to and after my seizure, there was a 5 week period before I was admitted to the hospital where I have no recollection or memory of anything.

During this time my mum kept a diary blog of each day recording my behavior and daily events.

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Lucy explains that her symptoms started with speech issues, then progressed to confusion and paranoia.

Then, she didn’t eat for two days, was constantly exhausted, and stopped responding to questions in full sentences.


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Then Lucy had her first seizure — it lasted about two minutes and terrified both her and her mother.

For the next few days, Lucy’s symptoms got worse and worse. She started hallucinating, making animal noises, running away, and doing art projects until her hands were blistered.

She had sever delusions where she believe she was a dinosaur. At one point, she also believed that she was a monkey.

At that point, Lucy was diagnosed with post-ictal psychosis.

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Lucy can’t remember any of this time, but her family has told her everything that happened, including her aggressive behavior, public outbursts, and horrible nightmares and hallucinations.

Eventually, Lucy was hospitalized and doctors realized she had anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis.

 

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Lucy explains:

Encephalitis is when the brain becomes swollen or inflamed due to the immune system attacking the brain in error. The condition is so rare and there is simply not enough money invested for they research of this horrible disease.

Encephalitis has a massively high mortality rate in comparison to other infectious diseases and if not treated immediately can become fatal very quickly.

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She was finally transferred to a neurology specialist who saved her life. During the hospital transfer, Lucy went into respiratory stress and doctors told her parents to “prepare for the worst.”

Luckily, Lucy survived and started getting tests and treatments for her rare diagnosis.

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Despite the horrors of what Lucy went through, she was able to stay optimistic.

She explains:

Without health you have nothing. I’ve had to be positive to get through this journey.

I’ve turned such a horrific life event into something so positive because I am so grateful to be living.

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Lucy is still recovering, but it’s been a long road and she still faces a lot of daily challenges.

There are a lot of emotional ups and downs, but Lucy is grateful for the support she’s gotten from her friends and family.

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If you’re inspired by Lucy’s positivity, please SHARE this article with your friends!

To support Lucy’s encephalitis fundraising efforts, visit her Just Giving page.

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