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Review for Alternating Hemiplegia of Childhood Foundation Inc, Southfield, MI, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

My Granddaughter, Melody, was diagnosed with AHC at 18 months (Sep 2012).

She has had some issues with muscular contractions / stiffening / limp in her arms, legs, eyes, and mouth since birth, but nothing that anyone could document well or even diagnose. One doctor told us that she had a lazy eye and not to worry about it.

At six months she had a full body episode (she had no head control, she was unable to move her arms and legs like she was supposed to and was having difficulty swallowing due to her tongue pushing food back out like a newborn) and this was a child that had been trying to crawl just the night before. Her hospital stay was one week and EEG, MRI's etc. gave no answers. She "snapped" out of it and she was sent home with anti-seizure medication. On this medication she had more episodes and while they were not as drastic as the full body episode, she still would lose control of an arm or leg or both which was very frustrating for her as she was determined to be "normal". We took her off the medication and while the episodes didn't quit they became less frequent and were minor.

During this time we searched the internet for something that could point us in the right direction as the Doctors were as baffled as we were. We found many things that didn't quite fit and the doctors ruled them all out.

At twelve months she had another major episode like the one at six months. Again, no answers despite massive testing.

At this point I must say that her neurologist was WONDERFUL and continued to do research trying to figure out what was wrong with Melody.

When she had another major episode at 18 months, her neurologist again walked us through all the symptoms and asked numerous questions about her minor episodes as well. It was then that she was able to diagnose Melody with AHC.

It was wonderful to finally have a name and the beginnings of an understanding of this genetic condition, but the find out that there was no cure and not much research was disheartening. Sometimes it's not so great to be a "One in a Million Kid".

Further research brought us to the AHC Foundation where there was a wealth of information and better yet, we discovered other families who were going through what we were. We weren't alone in this!

Melody is now 27 months old and while she had another major episode a few weeks ago. We are able to handle it so much better because we now know what we are dealing with.

We have spread the word about AHC to all our friends and relatives and hope to continue educating people about this condition and help raise money for further research and perhaps someday, a cure!

We would still be in the dark about this condition if it weren't for the AHC Foundation. Keep up the great work!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes just keep those updates coming!

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