Friday, 8 March 2013

A wee girl that breaks my heart, & googling viruses 30 yrs later

There are so many images in a week that can break your heart, but this wee girl in Pakistan selling flowers has stayed with me.


An Edinburgh University book group is doing The State of Me and has invited me to chat to them. The chapters they have selected got me thinking back to the whole onset of illness, and I've been googling Coxsackie B4 (marvelling again how easy it is now to get information about an illness, about anything, back then it really was a case of going to the library, we knew nothing. And I still recall reading that Coxsackie could cause paralysis in young mice). Am fascinated to read about Dr John Richardson's work on ME and enteroviruses in north of England, am surprised I didn't know about him and want to order his book. The paragraph that stands out for me in the 2002 BMJ piece is:

Early on John believed that ME was an illness that could follow directly from a Coxsackie infection and one that was capable of altering the whole personality and abilities of someone he had known for years. The idea that it was just depression or hysteria, a psychoneurosis or “all in the mind,” he found not only ludicrous and cruel, but also dangerous, and his records contain several examples of suicide. When patients told him that they had grown tired after taking vigorous or progressively “graded” exercise and found that they had to pay for it by being much worse for the next day or so, he believed them and sought other methods of treatment. 

And it was after speaking to virologist Dr Eleanor Bell in Glasgow - referenced in the above article - that my mother got my referral to Dr Behan in  late 1983 - a year after I had become ill (I was by then nineteen).

And from Norway we have this recent fundraising video for  Rituximab research at Haukeland Hospital, featuring doctors and politicians. And in UK we have the gibberish of PACE and pretend clinics for ME. Thank goodness for the annual  Invest in ME international conference, coming up in May.

And here is more up to date info on ME and implication of enteroviruses (Dr Chia's work)  from the CFS Patient Advocate's blog  (the blog author's daughter has severe ME).

No comments: