Home care for a GBS patient

A few months back, Life Circle provided home care for a GBS patient. GBS is the acronym for Guillain–Barré syndrome. This is one of the rarest cases handled by their team.

Onset of Guillain–Barré syndrome

Twenty-eight-year-old Asha’s life suddenly changed when one fine day she suddenly and unexpectedly developed GBS. GBS is a rare medical condition that affects the nerves outside the brain and spinal cord. It can be scary because it often causes people to have weakness or even paralysis in parts of the body. However, most of the people who get afflicted with GBS recover. And what is more, they return to their normal lives and activities.

Asha spoke about the trauma that accompanies this frightening illness and her gradual recovery. She mentions that the pillars of support in her journey to recovery were her parents, her brother, her husband and her in-laws along with caregivers from Life Circle.

Support from her family

During the initial stages of the illness, she spent a long period of time in the hospital. Her parents and brother were her caregivers. She mentions that her brother would stay up all night in the hospital massaging her legs because that relieved her from the excruciating pain.

GBS was a severe disruption in not only Asha’s life but also that of her family members. The newly married young woman who was doing well in life had to temporarily stop working. Her husband sought a transfer to Hyderabad from Bhubaneshwar in order to extend moral support to his wife. But her mother who is a professor in Ethiopia returned back to her profession. This is because Asha did not want to disrupt her mother’s career. That’s when the family decided to engage a professional home attendant from Life Circle.

Opting for home nursing care

Asha was completely dependent on caregivers for activities of daily living as she was unable to use her hands and legs. She also experienced severe pain in her limbs. In addition, she experienced needle prick sensation, tingling and shooting pain. Mere words cannot describe the intensity of her pain. The caregivers were always on their toes during this phase. They would massage her, hold her hands and legs in a position that was comfortable, change her position from time to time, provide toileting assistance, feed her, assist with physiotherapy, etc. Her family stepped in at every stage to assist the professional caregivers.

The most important aspect of the recovery period was physiotherapy. She spent months undergoing rehabilitation at a physiotherapy centre. Life Circle’s caregiver Manjulata lent her all the support at the centre.

Asha thrived on the support from her “caregiving team”. If you step into her house, you can actually experience love, care, warmth and support. She is all praise for her brother: “He has been more than a mother and father to me.” He often stayed up, assisted her in the toilet, and offered her mobility assistance. He provided immense emotional support to her during the tough period. During these trying times, Asha went through phases of anger and helplessness.

Recovering from GBS takes patience. From being completely bedridden to being able to walk with support, Asha has come a long way over the past year. She is almost close to complete recovery now. Her “support team” does not miss a chance to celebrate milestones in her recovery. Recently, they had all been to a movie.

The positivity factor

What is most striking about Asha is her positive mindset and good temperament. She and her “caregiver team” were together responsible for her recovery. As mentioned earlier, home care for a GBS patient is one of the rarest cases handled by a Life Circle team. We wish Asha all the best!

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