This is our niece, Sara Ann Barnes. She is 16 years old. On Saturday, Feb. 28, she woke up with tingling in her feet. Sunday, she had tingling in her hands & feet. Monday, she had tingling & numbness from the waist down. She kept saying that she felt like there was something in her throat. Monday, her mom (my sister), Maria, took her to the doctor. He said she had an upper respiratory infection & double ear infection & put on a Z-pack. He said he had no idea what the numbness & tingling could be, possibly related to the ear infection. If it didn’t go away in a couple of day, come back. Tuesday, March 3, she woke up & was coming down the stairs, her legs wouldn’t work & she fell. She was taken to the ER in Gooding. Sara’s uncle, Dr. Randy Barnes, was consulting with the ER doctor at NCMC. They were testing her for MS. With all the tests they ran on her they found that she had all the classic symptoms of Guillain Barre Syndrome (GBS).It is a rare condition that causes the immune system to attack the nerves outside the brain & spinal cord. It is characterized by numbness, tingling, weakness or paralysis in the legs, arms, breathing muscles & face. It can affect all ages. The exact causes of GBS is unknown.
By 1:00 p.m. on that Tuesday, they were transferring her by ambulance to St. Luke’s in Boise. That afternoon the doctors did a spinal tap, MRI & blood work to check protein levels consistent with GBS. The tests were inconclusive of GBS but because of the obvious symptoms they treated her for GBS. On Wednesday they started her on a 5 day treatment called (IVIG) intravenous immunoglobulin. It is given as a plasma protein replacement therapy for immune deficient patients who have decreased or abolished antibody production capabilities. Her condition continued to worsen & by Saturday, March 7, at midnight they had to put her In ICU on a ventilator as she could no longer breathe on her own. She could no longer speak to us. With each passing day we watched as she no longer had any muscular function. Communicating with her was very difficult especially for her. It seemed like all our days ran together. The doctors were very hopeful that she would recover but the time was uncertain as it affects people differently. She had to have Respiratory therapy to help her to keep her lungs clear as not to get pneumonia. She also had many other therapies, too. All of the doctor’s nurses, therapist & other staff at St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital were extraordinary. Two weeks into her stay in ICU, the doctor’s did another MRI & more blood work. It was then they knew for certain that it was GBS. They did another round of the IVIG & after 5 days of that it seemed like our Sara was coming back to us. We tried to keep her in good spirits & you couldn’t tell from her face but you could see that she was laughing her stomach moving. She had a tracheotomy because her throat was extremely sore. This allowed her throat to heal from the irritation of the ventilator tube. I had to be away from her for over a week as I had some personal things. Before I left, I told her I wanted her to work on the sign for “I Love you”. I have pictures on my Facebook where she tried & then where she succeeded. So I’m missing her terribly & I get a phone call & hear “Hi Aunt Marti, I love you” I just broke down & cried. For over a month, I had not heard her speak. With each passing day she is getting stronger. The doctors thought they would move her to a rehabilitation center in Boise but one of her doctors, Dr. Christenson said” We’re not moving her. We will keep her until she is able to breath on her own”. So on Friday, April 10, she was transported to the Inpatient Rehabilitation at St. Luke’s in Twin Falls. Saturday she was able to put her own shirt on. For all of us, we take for granted every day, that we dress ourselves. We think nothing of being able to eat, drink & go about our daily activities. For Sara, she’s learning all over again. Our family has been so very blessed to have family, friends & friends of family friend’s, that have prayed for Sara. She has been amazing throughout this whole ordeal. On behalf of my niece Sara & the rest of our family, I would like to say Thank you from our hearts to yours. Prayer is a very tremendous gift & we have truly been gifted. God has kept her so strong & so faithful as well as the rest of our family. To God we give the Glory!!! I will be planning a benefit for her just as soon as I know when she will get to come home. In the meantime if you would like to participate or donate to this cause, please contact me at 539-1493, send me an e-mail at mscott9613@ yahoo.com or contact me via Facebook. I would also like to have a silent auction. Your donated items are greatly appreciated. The funds raised will be used for outstanding medical bills not covered by insurance. I would like to say Thank you, in advance for you participation. An account will also be set up at Pioneer Federal within the next week. May God Bless you So Much!!!
With all our Love,
Steve & Marti Scott on behalf of
Sara Ann Barnes
Maria & Tim Bagley
This is our Sara today. She had her feeding tube removed yesterday. Still only eating jello & broth. Thank you God for your healing power & thank you FB family for your prayers & support. I love you all so much. My heart is happy & blessed!!!